Grandparents’ Dream Come True
Cornwall Manor residents Arthur and Mary Ellen Ford can be seen on campus sporting their navy blue “Neiswender Team USA Wheelchair Basketball” shirts. They are your typical grandparents – beaming with pride about their grandson, Ryan Neiswender, who now is in Tokyo to participate with the Men’s USA Wheelchair Basketball team. The Paralympic Games begin on August 24.
Art and Mary Ellen
Art and Mary Ellen are natives of Lancaster County but moved to Annville in 1965. They recently relocated to Cornwall Manor in May 2021. They have three children located in Lebanon, Linglestown (Harrisburg area) and Washington, DC and six grandchildren.
“Ryan is smart, friendly and determined,” shares his grandparents. He began wheelchair basketball at age 7 and it immediately became his passion. By the time he was 8, his goal was to be on the Paralympic team. He was born with a muscle disorder, arthrogryposis, that prevented the joints in his legs from developing properly.
Ryan is a 2013 graduate of Cedar Crest High School and attended the University of Illinois on a full scholarship for wheelchair basketball. Ryan missed his high school graduation because he was attending tryouts for the National Team. The National Team is comprised of 16; 12 move forward and 4 are alternates. Ryan made the National Team in 2013 as an alternate. Through lots of training, experience and determination, Ryan has made the National Team of 12 for this year’s games in Tokyo.
Art and Mary Ellen were present when Ryan made his first international bucket in Colombia, South America. He also played professional European basketball in Germany.
While Ryan is excited to be representing the USA, the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions are not allowing fans at the Games, meaning that Ryan’s parents and wife, Lauren, will be unable to attend. They will however be watching extensive coverage in Colorado Springs with other Team USA fans.
All of us at Cornwall Manor wish Ryan and the Men’s Team USA Wheelchair Basketball all the best. We can’t wait to watch the Games! May all your wishes come true!