Fremont’s Tom Davis wins fourth Boston Marathon handcycling title
The way Fremont’s Tom Davis figures it, he’s fulfilling God’s destiny for him, and there’s no other way to explain it.
A United States Army staff sergeant, Davis was serving in Iraq on June 3, 2006, when the truck he was riding in triggered a roadside bomb. Riding shotgun, Davis lost his left leg above the knee, broke both forearms, fractured his right knee and vertebra in his back, and cracked some bones in his head. He was also diagnosed with traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.
He recovered in the hospital for six or seven weeks and then spent 15 months rehabilitating at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Now age 39, he lives in Fremont with his wife, Jamie, and their four children.
And Monday, the Fremont man won his fourth handcycling title at the Boston Marathon.
An avid runner when he was growing up in Reading, Mich., Davis said he tried using a handcycle as part of his therapy at Walter Reed.
He didn’t get his first one until 2008, which he rode while he was serving as an instructor at Fort Benning, Ga. The bike sat in his shed for quite a while because he got into weight lifting instead.
“Then I felt like God was calling me to start handcycling,” Davis said.
He started with a couple of races in 2011, and 2012 was his first full year in competition. His cardio work from running and power from weightlifting meant handcycling was the perfect format for him.
“I’ve always been a runner, and once I got hurt, I couldn’t run anymore, so being able to get into a sport where I can go fast … the speed and the competition is what I love,” he said.
After trying two races in 2011, Davis won Boston in his first attempt in 2013. He also participated in the 2016 Paralympics in Rio where he finished fourth and sixth.