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February 14, 2012

[VIDEO] Blind speed skater: ‘It’s graceful and fast’

JOHNSTOWN — Leaning forward with anticipation, Hillary McFadden digs her skates in at the sound of the starter’s horn and takes the first turn at the front of the pack of four skaters.

The only skater ahead of her is her coach, Greg Hammaker, skating backward while giving her encouragement.

Like all 50 athletes in Special Olympics Pennsylvania Winter Games speed skating competition, Hillary has had to overcome obstacles of mental and physical disabilities. But the 28-year-old Harrisburg skater has one more disability: She has been blind since birth.

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