By Wesley Mahan
Brady Tanner, of Lawrence, will be competing for Team USA in powerlifting at the World Special Olympic Games in Athens. Brady has Rubenstein-Taybi Syndrome, which delays mental growth, impairs speech and classifies him as trainable mentally handicapped. However, his lust for life and happy-go-lucky attitude is contagious.
Tanner didn’t get started in serious competition until age 21. His father Gary was the head football coach at Haskell Indian Nations University for 14 years. A player from his father’s last recruiting class was a powerlifter and had trained individuals in powerlifting for the Special Olympics. The player took Brady under his wing and trained him.
Tanner was hooked and has been lifting ever since. The 30-year-old has added more than 100 pounds to his frame since he began lifting.
Below: "Cherokee Nation citizen Brady Tanner completes a deadlift during a competition."