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Paralympic Flag Bearers

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Jean Labonte named Canada's Paralympic flag bearer

the captain of Canada's defending champion sledge hockey team hopes disabled sports is the biggest winner when the country hosts its first Winter Paralympics.

Labonte, who lost his leg to cancer, was at a loss for words when he was named Monday as Canada's flag-bearer for the Paralympic opening ceremony. The Gatineau, Que., resident looked stunned when the announcement was made to cheers and applause from other Canadian team members.

Once the news sank in, Labonte climbed onto a stage and proudly waved a Maple Leaf before a small crowd in the same downtown square that was a focal point for celebrations during the recent Winter Olympics.

``I did not expect this,'' said Labonte, 40, who will lead the Canadian team into B.C. Place during Friday's opening ceremonies. ``It is an unbelievable honour to be able to carry the flag in any Paralympic Games, but especially in Canada.

http://www.ctvolympics.ca/news-centre/newsid=54970.html

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Úrsula Pueyo will carry the Spanish flag.

Ursula%20Pueyo%2001.jpg

Born in Palma de Mallorca in 1983, she lost her leg due to a motorcycle accident and will compete in alpine skiing, the only sport in which Spain will take part. She won three silver and a bronze medals at the First Paralympic Winter World Cup held a year ago in Sweden.

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And for Australia...

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Rising young Sydney skier Toby Kane will carry the Australian flag at Friday night’s Opening Ceremony for the Winter Paralympic Games in Vancouver. Kane, 23, is one of the Australian team’s medal prospects for 2010 after winning a bronze in the Super-G in 2006 on debut at the Torino Paralympics.

He was involved in a car accident at the age of two, which resulted in the amputation of his lower right leg.

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Gianmaria Dal Maistro will be Italy's flagbearer. He's a partially sighted skier and medallist since Nagano '98.

Best performance in 2006 wheh he took gold in Super G.

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