Tyler Merren has been a key player on the U.S. Paralympics Men's Goalball National Team for several years, and 2008 marked his second Paralympic Games. He says the game has helped shaped him into the person he is today.
Merren began playing goalball in 1999 at the Annual Sports Education Camp at Western Michigan University. He was immediately invited to attend practices with the nationally respected Western Michigan Wrecking Crew, a team consisting of two Paralympians.
Though he was certainly scrawny and definitely a rookie, Merren was determined to improve his skills and performance. Throughout high school he packed on over thirty pounds of muscle and attended as many practices and tournaments as possible. Merren was invited to his first USA tryout camp in 2001, where he made the team, and attended his first international tournament in May of the same year - the Pan American Games. Since then, Merren has been with the U.S. team and will continue to do so until God, injury or his wife make him stop.
Merren lives with his wife and three children in Kalamazoo, Mich., where he attends his local church, Westwood Christian Reform. He is a full-time student at Western Michigan University, studying to get his degree in exercise science. When not studying, he stays busy maintaining his home and he also enjoys training, reading and playing with his children.
Merren lives by the motto "If you can't perform any and every task that your coaches throw at you with your top ability, then you haven't trained hard enough."
- 2008: U.S. Paralympic Team member, Men's Goalball - Beijing, China
- 2007: Gold medal, Trakai Lithuania
- 2007: Gold medal, National Championships, St. Augustine Florida, Awarded MVP of the tournament
- 2006: Bronze medal, World Championships, Spartanburg South Carolina
- 2005: Silver medal, Panamaerican Games, Sal Paulo Brazil
- 2004: Bronze medal, Paralympic Games, Athens Greece
- 2003: Silver medal, IBSA World Goalball Championships
- 2002: Gold medal, Youth National Championships, St. Augustine Florida, Awarded MVP for the tournament
- 2001: Silver medal, Pan American Games