Last week in Mexico, at the Parapan Olympcis, Haley Beranbaum won a gold medal and a bronze! Here she is with the three other girls from the Pacific Northwest swimming area that all made the te U.S. Parapan American Team. From left to right: Casey Johnson, Ira Kaplan, Haley Beranbaum, and Kayla Wheeler. Here's the write-up in the Herald Net, Everett, Wa., 11-22-11 BERANBAUM STRIKES GOLD Haley Beranbaum of Snohomish, a sophomore at Glacier Peak High School, won a gold medal and a bronze medal in swimming last week at the 2011 Parapan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. Beranbaum, who was born with a genetic aberration called achondroplasia, which results in dwarfism, placed first in the 200-meter individual medley (4 minutes, 32.29 seconds) and third in the 50 butterfly (56.95) in her first international competition. Her gold medal time was more than nine seconds ahead of the runner-up swimmer from Brazil and broke the U.S. record for athletes with her level of disability. The previous record of 4:38.99 was set in 1996. The 3-foot-7 Beranbaum, who competes in the S5 class -- for swimmers with full use of their arms and hands, but little use of their trunk or leg muscles and some degree of coordination difficulty -- also swam the 100 breaststroke, the 50 freestyle, the 100 freestyle, the 50 backstroke and the 200 freestyle, and set personal bests in each race.
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