22-year-old Aruba’s Jesus David de Marchena Acevedo gets into the pool for the men’s S7 50m freestyle in a few minutes in a seven swimmer deep heat that includes Great Britain’s Michael Jones, Germany’s Tobias Pollap, India’s Jadhav Suyash Narayan, Australia’s Matthew Levy, Brazil’s Italo Pereira and Colombia’s Carlos Serrano Zarate. Going into the heat, he had the slowest Rio Games qualifying time at 58.18 seconds, over 25 seconds slower than India Suyash Narayan’s time of 32.64.
de Marchena Acevedo is Aruba’s first ever Paralympic sportsperson as the country makes their debut in Rio. He is also the country’s only representative at these Games. de Marchena Acevedo took up swimming when he was a 9-year-old in Aruba. The swimmer who was born with spina bifida is coached by Jesus Arias de la Cruz. Outside of swimming, he also does equestrian and kayaking.
The men’s S7 50m freestyle event is the only one on de Marchena Acevedo Paralympic program in Rio