Jackie Grooms and Linda Rodger of Just For You Fashion give Paralympic skier Braydon Luscombe $2,000 a day before he flies to PyeongChang. Luscombe is representing Canada in downhill skiing at the 2018 Games. Travis Paterson/News Staff

Quadra Village downhiller competing at Paralympic Games this weekend

Local fashion store gives Paralympian $2,000 sendoff ahead of PyeongChang

Friends and family of Victoria’s Braydon Luscombe weren’t letting the downhill skier leave for the 2018 Winter Paralympics without a proper sendoff.

Luscombe, a Quadra Village resident, flew to PyeongChang on Feb. 27 to prepare for his second Paralympics. The downhill events start Friday and Luscombe will be ready. Before departing, his presence was required at the Just For You Fashions clothing store on the corner of Cedar Hill Road and Finlayson where store owner Jackie Grooms and her mom (and store employee) Linda Rodger presented Luscombe with $2,000 to keep Luscombe on the slopes.

Luscombe, 25, who lost part of his right leg to flesh-eating disease when he was five, is a member of the Canadian National Para Alpine Ski team who has competed in the World Cup downhill season since 2012. In 2014, Luscombe represented Canada at the Sochi Winter Games and finished 16th in the downhill and 25th in the Super G. He’ll compete in those events, both individually and in the super combined, the slalom and possibly the giant slalom.

The Paralympics start Friday with opening ceremonies and with the downhill ski event.

One thing is for sure, he’ll be bringing a lot of skis.

“In Sochi I crashed a few times and I also had some promising runs, I just couldn’t put the runs together,” Luscombe said. “And yeah, I will have about 10 sets of skis for PyeongChang.”

Since he started on the World Cup tour as a 17-year-old, Luscombe has 23 top-10 finishes including two sixth-place finishes from last year. In 2013 he was the national giant slalom champion.

Most recently he finished third at the World Cup stop in Kimberley on Feb. 11, a timely confidence boost heading to Korea.

His Monday afternoon visit to Just For You Fashions was a surprise in more ways than one.

“He knew we were going to give him money but we didn’t know we’d raise this much, a $1,000,” said Grooms, who matched the $1,000 raised by customers for the total of $2,000.

“The money is much appreciated, it’ll go directly into next season towards a new fleet of skis,” Luscombe said. “It’s been a struggle, there are sponsors who cover flights to the World Cup events, and a bit of money from the government [through the athlete assistance program] that helps.”

The connection between the Grooms and Luscombe started seven years ago when Jackie’s daughter Dariel began dating Luscombe. To aid Luscombe, Jackie recently placed a box in the store with Luscombe’s picture and story on it, and her mom, Rodger, a store employee, drove the campaign by happily reciting his story to anyone that came through the store.

The response was overwhelmingly positive, Rodger said.

“People opened their wallets. Whether it was emptying out all their pocket change or their bills.”

And Rodger had another surprise, catching both Luscombe and his mom off guard with a series of pictures taken when Luscombe was visited by Canadian Paralympic skier Gordon Tuck about 20 years ago. The photos were reprints from originals taken by Luscombe’s mom, and came to Rodger through a series of connections brought about by the store campaign.

“It’s great to see these, [to be honest] I don’t actually remember [that meeting],” smiled Braydon.

Luscombe grew up in the Cowichan area where Tuck was also from. Tuck had lost his leg in a logging accident before he turned to competitive para-skiing. Just a year after Luscombe lost his leg, his parents took him to Mount Washington to try skiing. He loved it. When word about Luscombe made its way to Tuck, the two-time Paralympian (Nagano 1998 and Salt Lake City 2002) visited the family.

CBC will broadcast the Paralympics on television and online.

reporter@saanichnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Braydon Luscombe during the downhill race of the Kimberley World Para Alpine Skiing World Cup finals, Feb. 8 to 11. Luscombe is now in Pyeongchang preparing for the 2018 Winter Paralympics. Roger Witney photo

Just Posted

The coroner on scene of a workplace fatality in Oak Bay on Oct. 20, 2020. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
UPDATED: Dangerous branches delay removal of body in Oak Bay workplace death

Traffic restricted on McNeill Avenue near Byng Road

(Black Press Media file photo)
Be prepared: Know what to do in the event of a Greater Victoria tsunami warning

Localized alert systems can provide potentially life-saving information

A mature Garry oak fell onto Richmond Road on Oct. 13 near Camosun College Lansdowne campus. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
Garry oak crashes down onto Richmond Road

Saanich responded to 59 tree-related calls

The Kildonan mansion at 931 Foul Bay Rd. is part of the Oak Bay heritage registry. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Oak Bay declines Kildonan House permissive tax exemption

Council briefs include new transformer for Oak Bay Rec., strata policy

The Better Business Bureau is warning people of scammers posing as Amazon customer support. (AP File Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Watch out for Amazon imposters, says scam expert

Better Business Bureau is warning of a rise in Amazon scammers as people online shop more

Jamie Lee Hellard, a.k.a. the ‘chalk fairy,’ poses with one of her custom chalk drawings. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
VIDEO: Victoria chalk fairy brings smiles to kids with cancer

Jamie Lee Hellard surprises pediatric cancer patients with custom chalk drawings on their birthdays

Advance polls are open from Oct. 15 to 21 with election day on Oct. 24. (Black Press Media file photo)
The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

Bernard Trest and his son Max, 10, are concerned about B.C.’s plan for students in the classroom. He was one of two fathers who filed a court application in August to prevent schools from reopening if stricter COVID-19 protections weren’t in place. That application was dismissed last week. (Contributed photo)
B.C. dad pledges to appeal quashed call for mandatory masks, distancing in schools

Bernard Trest and Gary Shuster challenged health, education ministries’ return-to-school plan

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
RCMP cleared in fatal shooting of armed Lytton man in distress, police watchdog finds

IIO spoke to seven civillian witnesses and 11 police officers in coming to its decision

A 34-year-old man was treated for a gunshot wound in Williams Lake Monday, Oct 19, 2020. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Williams Lake man treated for gunshot wound after accidental shooting: RCMP

Police are reminding residents to ensure firearms are not loaded when handling them

A injection kit is seen inside the newly opened Fraser Health supervised consumption site is pictured in Surrey, B.C., Tuesday, June 6, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. records 127 fatal overdoses in September, roughly 4 each day

Vancouver, Surrey and Victoria continued to see the highest numbers of overdoses

Investigators work at the Sagmoen farm in Silver Creek. - Image credit: Observer file photo.
Sex workers allegedly called to farm of Okanagan man convicted of assault, RCMP investigating

Curtis Sagmoen, convicted in relation to assault of sex trade workers, is prohibited from soliciting escorts

(Black Press Media files)
Early voters more likely to favour NDP, but overall B.C. election is tightening: poll

According to Elections BC, 383,477 people cast a ballot during advanced voting days

Most Read