Former Shriners Hospitals for Children patient, 22-year-old Dalton Herendeen has competed in two consecutive Paralympic Games - London in 2012 and Rio in 2016. He works every day to reach beyond limits for himself and others.
Dalton, who had his left leg amputated after developing a blood clot as an infant, is the assistant swim coach at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Dalton works with non-disabled students who see him as an inspiration. He uses his own experiences to help motivate towards greatness both in and out of the water.
“I have just finished my first year coaching at the college-level. I love it!” said Dalton. He added, “We had a great year, sending six swimmers to Nationals, which is five more than the previous year. Working with the students has helped me understand what coaching is all about and has given me more drive to reach my goals. It’s great to watch and learn, not just from your team, but how other teams work and function. The fact that I can be around so many great members of the University of Mary Washington family is helping me see what works and doesn’t work in the pool.”
Dalton attended college at the University of Indianapolis where he competed in the 400M, 1,000 free and the mile. He was top eight in conference all four years at the university. He was also the first freshman in the history of the University of Indianapolis to win the Mental Attitude Award.
Dalton now trains at Mary Washington under head coach Abby Brethauer, a regimen that includes swimming and lifting weights six days a week. He credits the ongoing care he received at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Chicago with much of his success. He says the doctors and therapists at Shriners Hospitals helped him see his abilities and always encouraged him to do things for himself.
Dalton is also a Mason and his dad became a Shriner to give back for the inspiring care that his son received at Shriners Hospitals for Children. Dalton continues to represent our hospitals, our staff and our patients in an extraordinary way. Shriners Hospitals for Children is proud to cheer on Dalton and know there are no limits to what he can achieve!