Kurka’s first Olympic dream wasn’t on the slopes but on the wrestling mat, as he was a six-time Alaskan state champion in freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling. However, this dream took a detour at age 13 after an ATV accident severely damaged three vertebrae in the middle of his spinal cord. Two years after his accident, he first tried the monoski with the encouragement of his physical therapist through a program called Challenge Alaska. He went on to make the U.S. Para Alpine Team in 2010 and made his international debut on the World Cup circuit. He became the first person to monoski the Christmas Chute of Mt. Alyeska in Girdwood, AK. Andrew is a three-time Paralympian, two-time Paralympic medalist, and World Champion.
Outside of skiing, he works as a country music DJ and is the proud owner of a bed and breakfast in Alaska. His bnb is focused on providing people with disabilities the opportunity to explore his home state that he loves. Recently, Kurka earned his Sport Pilots license in partnership with Able Flight at Purdue’s flight school, which he says gives him freedom and allows him to see the world from a different perspective. He enjoys being outdoors as much as possible and spending time with his family and friends. Kurka is also an Athlete Mentor for Classroom Champions, a non-profit organization that partners Olympic and Paralympic athletes with students and teachers in underserved communities
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3 Things You Didn't Know About Andrew Kurka
- 1. Andrew is the proud owner of a bed and breakfast in Alaska that is focused on providing people with disabilities the opportunity to explore his home state that he loves.
- 2. He recently earned his Sport Pilots license!
- 3. Andrew is also a boat captain and enjoys fishing and being outdoors as much as possible.