Zion Pouncy: Making the impossible possible

Posted at 5:44 PM, Jul 14, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-28 16:29:36-04


Zion's mother, Alicia Beckham, raised enough funds to send Zion to Iowa. His first race will be on July 31st where he will compete in the 200 meter quarterfinals and he has to make the top 24 to advance to the semi-finals.


To the average viewer, Zion Pouncy is just another athlete at track meets, but students and staff at Harker Heights High School knows how special he is.

At age three, Zion was diagnosed with autism — it brought a change to not just his life, but also for his mother Alicia Beckham.

"When it was given to me, the diagnosis, for lack of a better words, I was a bit in shambles," Beckham said.

"The doctors were like, 'He won't be able to do this. He'll be limited in self functioning, he'll be limited in speaking, he'll be limited in doing things that normal regular kids would do,' and definitely no one wants to hear that."

Zion would try multiple sports, but there ended up being one that stood out from the rest.

"I always loved running, especially like recess. I just loved running. That's why I always played tag," Pouncy said.

"When I was at the Eastern Hills Middle School, I saw Zion playing a lot of sports," said Harker Heights freshman football head coach, Melvin Williams.

"I met Zion throughout school. He and I kind of developed a relationship and then I saw him playing basketball, he wasn't quite getting it and he came out of the track and I said 'You gonna try track?'. He said, 'Yes, sir," Williams said.

Despite all the trials and the challenges, Zion proved himself on the track by qualifying for the Junior Olympics.

"I was in shock. I was happy. I was basically everything like, you know, I was a little bit nervous because in my first year doing track and somehow I made it to Junior Olympics," Zion said.

"I told mom from the first meet after I saw him running the first time un-coached, untrained, just pure raw talent out there on the track," said IAU Killeen Elite track coach Christopher Brooks.

"I knew the people that he was competing against some of the other athletes — I've been around the scene for a little while. Some of the athletes that he was kind of keeping up with at the time. I said, 'Well, by the time we get to the end of the summer, go ahead and book your ticket for nationals'," Brooks said.

"I am beyond. I am proud of my son," Beckham said.

"It was so hard being socially awkward and not being able to fit in, not having a place and to find something. Not only did he find something, he's excelling in something. It was just motivation that it could be done. I constantly want him to understand. It's not about your disability, it's always the ability or whatever you can do. Find that thing that's yours. Find that thing in your niche and excel in it," Beckham said.

An incredible achievement, but the family is facing a setback. With traveling comes expenses and Olympic size fees hold Zion back from competing on the big stage.

"If Z makes it to the Olympics, I've got to figure out how I'm gonna get him there," Beckham said.

"My job as his mother is to pour into him and support him and whatever it is that he wants to do to even make it there."

"That was an accomplishment in itself, especially since it was my first year doing track," Pouncy said.

"But to compete too, that's amazing. That's an amazing feat there."

Constantly overcoming the impossible, Pouncy is certainly a champion on the field and at heart.

Alicia has been taking donations multiple ways. If you want to contact Alicia, you can reach her at:

The Junior Olympics begin on August 29th in Iowa.