Former Chico State track & field star shines in Paralympics


Photo Courtesy of Chico State Athletics

Kym Crosby competing in a race during her time at Chico State

Winning a medal at the Paralympics is a special moment, former Chico State student athlete Kym Crosby’s quest during the 2021 Tokyo Paralympics should continue to inspire athletes.

Crosby was born with albinism, which affects the production of melanin affecting skin, hair and eyesight. She was also born with 20/400 vision in both eyes, which means she is legally blind. Crosby continues to be an inspiration to all track & field athletes even with those disabilities. 

Jorge Barajas, current thrower for the men’s track and field team at Chico State expressed how inspiring Crosby’s story is and sees this as a stepping stone for other athletes trying to compete.

“The coaches emphasize family and she was a part of our program and it is amazing seeing an alumni excel on that stage,” Barajas said. “It sets an example for current and future athletes at Chico State.”

Crosby was a star during her time at Chico State. The family atmosphere that her teams provided and the constant need to improve is what made her feel at home during her Chico State days. 

Women’s track and field head coach Robert Nooney mentioned how much of a joy it was having Crosby on the team and how he isn’t surprised by her success. She would always try to get extra work in before her classes and it showed. 

“That is when a coach/educator is most proud of when a student athlete moves on and becomes a successful champion post collegiately,” Nooney said. 

Nooney expresses how Crosby’s time at Chico was something the team valued and it helped further develop her skills, which led her to compete in the Paralympics.

Kym Crosby running in a race while at Chico State.
Photo Courtesy of Chico State Athletics

“I feel that it was a good stepping stone for me to get to where I am,” Crosby said. “I had to compete while I was at Chico against girls with really good times and abilities. I feel that it has prepared me to compete on the world stage.”

“The Flash,” a nickname she got during her time in Chico, is going for redemption after she got the bronze medal in the 100 meter race but didn’t place for the 400 meter race in the Brazil Paralympic Games in 2016. 

Crosby competes in the T13 women’s sport class, which is the class where athletes have the least severe vision impairment for the para athletes guidelines.  

Crosby finished with the bronze medal for the T13 women’s 100 meter race with a time of 12.08 seconds. She also finished with the bronze in the T13 women’s 400 meter race with a time of 56.79 seconds, a personal record. 

“Grateful, happy and shocked are the first three words that come to mind,” Crosby said. “I worked so hard to get to this point and to see it all pay off by being on the medal stand, it means so much to me.”

After the conclusion of these games, Crosby is now a three-time Paralympic medalist and wants to continue to achieve greatness.

Her mind is focused on The Para Athletics Championships next year in Kobe, Japan. Then in 2023, she looks forward to competing in the Parapan American Games Chile. 

Crosby expresses this is all preparation for the Paris Paralympic Games in 2024, which could be the final Paralympic Games she will be participating in.

Javier Hernandez can be contacted at [email protected] or @jhm1226 on Twitter