Wheelchair Tennis Star Randy Snow to Be Inducted to International Tennis Hall of Fame

Randy Snow Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

Wheelchair tennis player and three-time Paralympic medalist Randy Snow has been elected for induction to the International Tennis Hall of Fame for 2012.

Snow is the second wheelchair tennis player to be inducted, joining Brad Parks, the founder of the sport, who was inducted in 2010.

In addition to his tennis career, Snow was a competitive basketball player and racer. He was a leader in the development of wheelchair tennis and an advocate for improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. Snow's Hall of Fame induction will be a posthumous recognition of his achievements and contributions to the sport. He died Nov. 19, 2009, while volunteering at a wheelchair tennis camp in El Salvador.

"Beyond his athletic success though, he played a major role in building the sport and he inspired so many others to play wheelchair tennis and other sports,” Parks said of Snow. “He was among a dedicated group of people who worked very hard to grow wheelchair tennis, and the inclusion of wheelchair athletes in the International Tennis Hall of Fame has been a great affirmation for the sport's progress and importance."

As a teenager, Snow was a ranked tennis player in the state of Texas, but a farming accident left him a paraplegic at age 16. Snow then committed himself to wheelchair sports. At the University of Texas, Snow formed a wheelchair basketball team under the direction of Jim Hayes, the university's wheelchair sports director. Soon after, he began wheelchair racing and training as a wheelchair tennis player.

As a tennis player, Snow was ranked world No. 1 in singles and doubles in 1991 and won 22 major tournament titles during his career. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, he was a member of the United States Men's World Cup team. Snow was named ITF Wheelchair Tennis Player of the Year in 1991 and USA Wheelchair Athlete of the Year in 2000.

Snow received a silver medal in the 1984 Summer Olympics 1500-meter wheelchair race, the first Paralympic event to appear before a large audience. He went on to win gold medals in the 1992 Paralympic Games in Barcelona for singles and doubles tennis and a bronze medal in the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games as part of the wheelchair basketball team. In 2004, Snow became the first U.S. Paralympian to be inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame.

The induction ceremony is set for July 14 at the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum in Newport, R.I.