Exclusive video: Paraplegic wins Olympic gold medal

Former F-16 pilot Dror Cohen may have lost the use of his legs, but not his competitive spirit or his drive to succeed.

Dror Cohen 311 (photo credit: Leadel.net)
Dror Cohen 311
(photo credit: Leadel.net)
Dror Cohen was an F-16 fighter pilot and an instructor in the Israeli Air Force flight school. One night his world was changed forever, when a car accident in June 1992 left him paralyzed from the waist down.
However, Dror did not let his physical disability stop him. He went on to compete in the 2000 Paralympic games in Sydney, raced in the 2002 Paris Dakar Rally and won a gold medal for sailing in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.
From F-16 to D-12 is Dror Cohen’s self-described story. Once an F-16 fighter pilot, Dror’s D-12 vertebrae changed his life forever.
Following the accident, Dror faced many obstacles and challenges. "From being the king of the world like in Top Gun....you're now in the bed depending on other people.....you have to make a decision."
According to friends, Dror’s strength lies in his ability to succeed at whatever he puts his mind to. And that is exactly what he did.
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In 1995 he was one of the founders of the “Challenge” Association in Israel, a non-for-profit organization that promotes outdoor sports and recreation activities for those with disabilities and other special needs.
Today, Dror is one of Israel’s leading athletes in disabled sports. A gold medalist in sailing at the 2004 Olympic Games, Dror held the title of Israli ski and water ski champion for many years. In 2002, he set out to compete in the Paris-Dakar Rally, the most renowned and riskiest rally in the world.
Whether it’s racing cars in the Paris Dakar Rally or competing in the Olympics, Dror never stopped going after, and achieving, his goals in life.