ARIZONA NEWS

Queen Creek teen in wheelchair gears up for wrestling season

Jan 18, 2020, 12:04 PM | Updated: Jan 20, 2020, 10:02 am
(KTAR News Photo/Griselda Zetino)...
(KTAR News Photo/Griselda Zetino)
(KTAR News Photo/Griselda Zetino)

PHOENIX — A 14-year-old boy with special needs in Queen Creek has no limitations.

Cole Ludwig is in a wheelchair, but that doesn’t stop him from being on the Newell Barney Junior High School wrestling team.

“At first I just thought it was a young kid wanting to just come hang out with a team,” said Joe Fraley, Cole’s wrestling coach. “But as Cole continued to come and continued to show up to practice and talk more about wrestling, it became very clear that he wanted to be a member of the team.”

Cole has been wrestling for three years. He has been able to do so with the help from his coach.

Fraley said he helps Cole get to the wrestling mat during matches and shows him what movements and techniques to follow.

Cole’s passion for wrestling is helping him improve his mobility. He is starting to walk for longer distances and hopes to one day be able to walk on to the wrestling mat on his own.

Fraley said Cole is an inspiration not just for him, but also his teammates.

“You look at Cole and you see the disabilities that he has,” Fraley said. “He doesn’t care. He doesn’t use his disabilities as a reason not to do something.”

“He’s just the epitome of what hard work and effort will do for anyone,” he added.

Cole was set to kick off this year’s wrestling season on Saturday by participating in the East Vally preseason wrestling tournament.

But wrestling isn’t all he does.

His dad, Troy Ludwig, said he also plays baseball, basketball, football and bowling. He also does horseback riding.

“I let him be who he wants to be,” Ludwig said. “I don’t treat him like he has a disability. I treat him like a normal kid.”

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Flickr Photo/ADOT)...
KTAR.com

Work to begin Monday night on I-17 improvement project north of Phoenix

Work is scheduled to begin Monday night on a long-planned freeway improvement project north of Phoenix, transportation officials said.
13 hours ago
(Public Domain Image)...
KTAR.com

2 people in helicopter survive ‘hard landing’ in desert north of Mesa

Two people aboard a small helicopter survived a "hard landing" Monday morning in a desert area of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community.
13 hours ago
FILE - Stewart Rhodes, founder of the Oath Keepers, center, speaks during a rally outside the White...
Associated Press

Jailed Oath Keepers founder’s past includes Arizona Supreme Court clerkship

Before his Oath Keepers stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, Stewart Rhodes clerked for an Arizona Supreme Court justice.
13 hours ago
Arizona Republican Gov. Doug Ducey gives his state of the state address at the Arizona Capitol, Mon...
Associated Press

Foes of Arizona school vouchers file to block huge expansion

Public school advocates who oppose an expansion of Arizona's private school voucher system filed enough signatures to block it from taking effect.
13 hours ago
(AP Photo/Jon Super) Follow @OatleyTasler...
Taylor Tasler

Glendale police to work with Valley agencies for influx of human trafficking for Super Bowl

Valley law enforcement agencies are preparing for an expected rise in sex trafficking when the Super Bowl comes to Glendale in February.
13 hours ago
(City of Tempe Photo)...
KTAR.com

Last repairs on US 60 water transmission line break to begin Oct. 2

The final repairs on the U.S. 60 water line will shut down a portion of the freeway for several weeks starting next month.
13 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Sanderson Ford

Don’t let rising fuel prices stop you from traveling Arizona this summer

There's no better time to get out on the open road and see what the beautiful state of Arizona has to offer. But if the cost of gas is putting a cloud over your summer vacation plans, let Sanderson Ford help with their wide-range selection of electric vehicles.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
Queen Creek teen in wheelchair gears up for wrestling season