The XI Solemn Award Ceremony of the Russian Paralympic Committee “Return To Life” took place at the Paralympic House in Moscow on December 1, 2016.
Advisor of the President of Russia Mr. Igor Levitin delivered the welcome address of the President of Russia Mr. Vladimir Putin:
Your project marked a tenth anniversary this year rightly received the public recognition, became one of the brightest, social initiative that has a special honest value.
All prizewinners are our outstanding champions and record holders, whose courage, character and will deserved the deepest respect, it decisively demonstrates inspiring power of sport and unlimited possibilities of human.
And of course, I’d like to ensure you that Russia will continue to keep its commitment to the Paralympic principles, continue to support athletes, and make of the best for them.
President of Russian Paralympic Committee Vladimir Lukin opened the Ceremony.
This is the eleventh time we honor our athletes by the “Return To Life” Award. Now is the difficult times, and this celebration is one of the humane celebration to my personal memory.
Our Paralympic Movement exists no for showing themselves at international competitions, but the exact opposite, we participate at international competitions in order to say firstly to our athletes, our disabled persons and all individuals, that they are PEOPLE in the full sense of the word. So we continue to develop our internal Paralympic Movement.
Before the Award Ceremony the popular singer Valeria took the stage to perform one of her famous songs.
The first nomination “Turn of Fate” – winner Viktoria Boykova – world champion, two-times European champion in wheelchair fencing. The award was presented by Igor Levitin.
The nomination “Power in Will” – winner two-times world champion, 5-times European champion, and 5-times champion of the Open All-Russian Games on Paralympic Sports, 2 times record breaker in swimming Roman Zhdanov. The award was presented by President of the Russian NPC Vladimir Lukin and Olympic champion in artistic gymnastics Svetlana Khorkina.
In nomination “By Personal Example” the winner is Margarita Goncharova, many times Paralympic champion, world champion, champion of Open All-Russian Games on Paralympic Sports. The athlete was awarded by President of Federation of Persons with Physical Impairment in Moscow, Hero of Russia Vyacheslav Bocharov, Chairperson of Supervisory Board of Bosco Company Mikhail Kusnerovich and popular singer Valeria.
The next nomination “Overcoming” was awarded many-times world champion, world record holder, 4-times winner of Open All-Russian Games on Paralympic Sports swimmer Vyacheslav Emelyantsev. The award was presented by President of Russian Sport Federation of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities Sergey Evseev, Head of Sport Medicine Department of Federal Medical-Biological Agency Yuliya Miroshnikova and Olympic champion, President of Russian Rowing Federation Alexey Svirin.
In nomination “And life and tears and love…” – the winners are married couple Maria Timofeeva and Andery Kalina from Slavyansk. Maria is silver medalist of European championships in Swimming and her husband Andrey – three times world champion and 4-times winner of Open All-Russian Games on Paralympic Sports, three-times Paralympic champion. The awards were presented by 13-times Paralympic champion Rima Batalova, Vice-President of Central Union of Tourism Nikolay Paltsev and Olympic champion Tatyana Lebedeva.
In the next award in nomination “The second breath” went to 2-times Paralympic champion Elena Pautova. The athlete is 5-times world champion. The award was presented by Deputy Minister of Justice Alu Alkhanov, Director of Sochi Sport Center “Yug-Sport” Mikhail Dremov, and 3-times Paralympic champion Olga Semenova.
The next nomination “What is our life? Fight” – the winner is Alexander Efremov, merited coach of Russia, head coach of National Para-Taekwondo Team, 4 times he was recognized as Coach of the Year. The award was presented by Chairman of the Executive Board and 1st Vice-President of Russian NPC, Pavel Rozhkov, Vice-President of Central Union of Tourism Nikolay Paltsev and 3-times Olympic champion Alexander Karelin.
In nomination “I love you, Life” the winner is Anna Krivshina – 2-time world champion. The award was presented by 5-times Paralympic champion, Secretary General of the Russian NPC Andery Strokin, Vice-President of Russian NPV Anatoly Tsarik and Director of Sport Center “Ozero Krugloe” Olga Domuladzhanova.
In the next nomination “Standing Point” Anton Batugin, head coach of Russian Wheelchair Curling Team was awarded. The award was presented by President of Russian Federation of Sport for Persons with Physical Impairment Lev Seleznev, 4-times Paralympic champion Irek Zaripov.
The last nomination “Return To Life” Elena Gorlova was awarded. She is a winner of Open All-Russian Games on Paralympic Sports in athletics. The award was presented by Secretary of President’s Sport Council Alexey Kulakovsky and world champion, chairwoman of jury of experts of “Return To Life” Award Olga Bogoslovskaya.
Russian Paralympic Committee would like to thank all stakeholders and partners for their invaluable contribution. Special thanks to national sport channel “Match-TV”, founder of Support Foundation “Parasport” Oleg Boyko, Central Sport Club “Vityaz” in Podolsk, Charity Foundation “Nasledie”, Trade Union of Physical Culture, Sport and Tourism Workers, Central Council of Tourism, Bosco Company and Sberbank-Strakhovanie.