Steve Lietz was my hero. He contracted polio when he was 2, walked on crutches and with braces until he was about 12. About then he became involved with gymnastics and went to Nationals in Hawaii while he was a student at Towson State. After graduating and while working as a PE teacher he became involved in every wheelchair athletic event he could find. He played tennis, basketball and ultimately started racing in a wheelchair.

During his wheelchair racing career he developed into an elite athlete. He raced in multiple races including the LA, Pittsburgh, Boston, and Marine Corps marathons. He won the wheelchair division of the Marine Corps in 1990.  He participated in several international events in wheelchair track and field including the 1989 Stoke-Mandeville games in England; the PanAm Games in Caracas Venezuela in 1990; World Games for The Disabled in Assen Holland in 1990. The biggest event was at the Paralympics in 1994 in Berlin Germany.

It is my wish that the VETERUN’s inclusion of wheelchair athletes will become a living legacy to Steve. I know that his spirit will be at the race and with all of the racers.


Frances Brolle