Deja Young

Track & Field Paralympics

Served as envoy

  • 2019  –  Nigeria
  • 2020  –  Virtual
  • 2021  –  Japan

Born with brachial plexus that caused nerve damage and limited mobility to her right shoulder, Young has excelled with her unique running form. A standout on her high school track team, she lettered all four years while also competing in volleyball and softball. Despite her success, she received a lot of resistance from recruiters and college coaches because of her disability. She earned a track scholarship to Wichita State University where she was All-Conference. It was at a college meet that she learned about Paralympic track and field, a path that would lead her to her first Paralympic titles at the Paralympic Games Rio 2016. She also served as an athlete mentor as part of the Sports Envoy Program of the U.S. State Department to Nigeria in 2018.