Wheelchair rugby player Chuck Aoki represented Team USA in their opening game at the Tokyo Paralympics yesterday and was flag bearer in the opening ceremony alongside triathlete Melissa Stockwell. Following the ceremony, fans are curious to know more about Chuck Aoki’s parents and family away from the games.
Who are Chuck Aoki’s parents?
The athlete, who has three siblings, has previously talked on social media about how supportive his parents have been over the years.
While celebrating Father’s Day in 2016 ahead of the Rio Paralympics, Aoki opened up on how his father helped make his sporting dreams come true via a video message on the Team USA Twitter account.
In the video, he gushed: “Happy Father’s Day, dad! I’m sorry I’m not going to be there this Father’s Day, I’ll be travelling to play rugby.
“You made my career possible, taking me to basketball practice and rugby practices growing up, so it really means a lot to me, and I hope to get to play for you in Rio.”
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Paralympian selected as Team USA flag bearer
Aoki has a rare genetic condition (hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathies type II) that affects the feeling in his hands and feet. Tokyo 2020 is his third Paralympics with the athlete previously competing in the 2012 and 2016 games.
Ahead of the ceremony, Aoki opened up on the “stunning honour” of carrying the flag for his team as he spoke about his family’s support.
Talking to the US Olympic & Paralympic Committee, he said: “I also want to thank my family and my teammates for all of their support. I would not be in this position or be the athlete I am without them. When I am bringing in the flag, it is for all of them as well.”
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Is Chuck Aoki related to Steve Aoki?
As Chuck Aoki made headlines yesterday for being a flag bearer at the Paralympics opening ceremony, some fans have wondered whether the athlete is related to American DJ Steve Aoki.
While the athlete and DJ share the same last name, the pair are not related.