CWU News

Living Through Adversity: Woman in Wheelchair Rock Climbs at CWU for the First Time

In February 2018, Danielle Rice entered the hospital for a simple medical procedure. When she woke up her life had significantly changed. Rice could no longer use her legs properly.Danielle Rice climbs CWU rockwall

Utilizing a wheelchair, Rice, an avid outdoors-woman, adventurer and rock climber, thought she’d permanently lost her connection to the outdoor sports she loved. A year and a half later Rice is finding new ways to continue adventuring and exploring her passions.

On Aug. 10, Rice for the first time cinched up her harness, tied into a rope and picked hold after hold ascending Central Washington University’s climbing wall. Prior to the injury, Danielle and her husband, who live in Royal City, participated in rock climbing, but after the accident she no longer knew if this would be possible.

With the assistance of staff and a special harness Rice climbed horizontally across the rock wall flexing her muscles and maneuvering her body into positions she’d never done before.

“We figured out the different techniques that will help me get on the wall as independently as possible,” Rice said.

Before Rice’s accident, she attended CWU where she received a bachelor of science in interdisciplinary studies with a double minor in administrative management and psychology.

After college Rice pursued a career as a caregiver and for the last 12 years has worked with people with disabilities and helped them to explore an active lifestyle.

Read this article in its entirety online at the Daily Record.