James Gumbert is the head coach of Team USA’s wheelchair rugby team. Aside from being an active athlete and coach to some of America’s toughest athletes, he’s a dad to twins, which he says in some ways is even more of a challenge.
Coach became part of the BraunAbility family after a failed relationship with a competitor’s van.
“Space is a premium for me,” he explained. “VMI, while they may have a little more space in the center, you aren’t able to put anything in the back. Strollers, gear…BraunAbility has a nice mix between the two. The third row doesn’t feel like wasted space. The seats are very usable. As a result of all this, we can do things together as a family.”
Coach had his VMI van for many years and the family lovingly called it the Stagecoach for good reasons.
“When it was new, obviously it was quieter. [But] there’s outside road noise, it’s a harder ride, and communication from the front to the back row, well, let’s just say our six-year-olds either perfected the act of not being able to hear us or they really couldn’t,” he said.
When the life was leaving their dear companion minivan, they started looking for a replacement. BraunAbility surfaced as a clear contender and eventually surpassed the competition in the Coach’s eyes.
“It’s like you went into the forest and camped and left it better when you came out,” Coach said of the BraunAbility accessible van. “You took out what you didn’t need, but left the creature comforts. It’s all the flash and bang of an original vehicle but made accessible. I really know you guys aren’t going anywhere. You’ll stand behind what you do.”
The Team USA rugby team took home silver at the Rio Olympic games in 2016 after what is now being called one of the greatest games of rugby ever played. Coach is passionate about rugby and about his team. But his real passion is changing lives.
We have that in common with Coach, and we are proud to be a part of his active and full life for many years to come.