Here are #WNSTSweet16 people who had a dream in Baltimore

January 21, 2014 | Nestor Aparicio

14. Jessica Long

Jessica Long was born Tatiana Olegovna Kirillova and left at an orphanage in Bratsk, Russia in 1992. She was adopted by a family in Essex and her legs were amputated when she was 18 months old due to a condition known as fibular hemimelia. Her adoptive parents not only dealt with her unique condition and brought her to America but also taught her to compete in sports via gymnastics and swimming. In 2002, she started swimming and by 2004, at the age of 12, she was participating and winning gold medals in Athens at the Paralympic Games.

She’ll turn 22 in February and has now won 17 Olympic medals (12 gold, 3 silver, 2 bronze) through three Paralympic Games, adding Beijing and London to her debut in Greece. She also holds world records in 13 categories.

She had a dream to compete. She’s now the most decorated Paralympic athlete in the world.

There’s a much longer profile of Jessica Long at here.

See next page for No. 13

3 Comments For This Post

  1. Sam Says:

    This list is spot on…but somewhere in 16, Ray Lewis’ name should have appeared. No doubt about it.

  2. TimNATC Says:

    Heck of a job with this list! I see one that is missing though. His name is Nestor Aparicio. You cannot be a Baltimore sports fan and not recognize what Nestor has done for/meant to the city of Baltimore. Nestor worked hard from a young age to learn and master his craft. When he started WNST people laughed and said he would fail. He had a nationally syndicated radio show and gave it up because he didn’t want to leave his hometown. We should all be thankful that he stayed. Since I have known Nestor (I only really know him through listening and reading) he has always been ahead of his time. He loves sports, he loves Baltimore. Thank you Nestor!

  3. Rich Says:

    TimNATC stole my thunder. Except somehow I believe Nestor’s name is conspicuously absent from the list of 16, but is blatantly included by way of the byline. I, too, believe Nestor is the ultimate Baltimore sports dream-come-true story, but you’d be hard-pressed to fill the stands with enough believers. I don’t think he’d really want it any other way. Nice work, Nasty, as always.

Leave a Reply