Former Paralympian reacts to Oscar Pistorius murder charges

Published On: Feb 20 2013 10:09:59 PM EST
Updated On: Feb 21 2013 12:06:39 AM EST

A local Paralympian gives his thoughts on Olympian Oscar Pistorius. Pistorius faces charges of murdering his girlfriend.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

Scott Brown spends his days at Brooks Rehabilitation, where he coaches and mentors adaptive sport athletes like himself.

"I've read articles and stopped reading because it's a little painful to see," said Brown.

The pain that Brown is referring to is from learning that a champion in his community, Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, faces murder charges in the death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

"As a Paralympic athlete, you spend your life dedicated to your sport, and you've given yourself to that sport," said Brown. "All that he has done, all the gains he's made for disabled athletes all over maybe isn't erased, but it's certainly tainted."

Brown competed in the 2008 Paralympic games in Beijing as a rower and has a similar artificial leg as Pistorius.

Brown said, the double-amputee, known as the "Blade Runner," always came across as a likable, kind-hearted guy. He said many people in the para-athletic community admired Pistorious for achieving so many accomplishments.

"You can never truly tell where somebody's head is at," said Brown.

Brown doesn't feel that Pistorious' negative headlines will have a negative effect on the athletes he works with, or the Paralympic community.

"I don't feel that it tarnishes the entire Paralympic community, again it's individual," said Brown. "The Olympic spirit I still think holds true."

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