Harper congratulates P.E.I. athlete on Paralympic medal

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Prime Minister Stephen Harper has given his props to a P.E.I. athlete that made history at the Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia over the weekend.

The Prime Minister’s Office issued a statement congratulating Mark Arendz and several other Canadian athletes who have won medals at the 2014 winter games, which kicked off last Thursday.

Arendz, originally from Hartsville, P.E.I., was less than one second short of winning the gold medal after clocking a time of 19:14.0 (1+0) in the men’s 7.5 km standing biathlon competition.

Winning the silver medal still put Arendz in the history books as the first Canadian ever to win a silver medal in biathlon at the Paralympic Winter Games.

“It is . . . with great pleasure and pride that I congratulate Mark Arendz for becoming the first Canadian athlete to win a Paralympic medal in biathlon with his silver medal win in the men’s biathlon 7.5 km (standing) event. The entire country is immensely proud of this accomplishment,” Harper said in the statement.

Arendz said it felt “absolutely great” to win medal in the competition.

“And a big relief to get on the podium right away,” he said. "I fought as hard as I could, and it was such a close race at the end."

Harper also congratulated Mac Marcoux and guide Robin Fémy on winning a bronze medal in alpine skiing men’s downhill (visually impaired) and Josh Dueck for winning the silver medal in alpine skiing men’s downhill (sitting).

Arendz, who now resides in Canmore, Alta., is the reigning world champion in 7.5 km biathlon and finished 1st overall in the 2012-13 World Cup standings, and 2nd overall in both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 World Cup standings.

This was his second time in the Paralympic Games after having competed at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Paralympic Games.

There are 54 Canadian athletes competing in the 2014 games, which are being held until March 16.

Geographic location: Sochi, Russia, Hartsville Canmore Vancouver

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Recent comments

  • optimist
    March 10, 2014 - 11:54

    yep, he can get the Order of PEI too, and what about Eli MacEachern who won Olympic gold a few years ago? He's didn't get his yet... Let's play fair to all.

  • voter
    March 09, 2014 - 13:47

    . ghiz--here's your chance again - order of pei !!!