A Sea King helicopter, a navy frigate and Vancouver Canucks captain Roberto Luongo will help carry the Paralympic torch on its journey to B.C. Place, organizers revealed yesterday.

The torch enters Vancouver today for the first of three celebration days leading up to Friday’s opening ceremonies.

“It’s quite emotional,” said Suzanne Reeves, director of communications for the torch relay.

“Many of (the torchbearers) have overcome significant obstacles in their lives. They’ve persevered and they really are the epitome of what we’re going to see during the Paralympic Games.”

Unlike the longer Olympic relay that followed a linear route, the 10-day Paralympic relay is focused around community celebrations.

In Vancouver, those celebrations take place at Riley Park (today), the University of B.C.

(tomorrow) and will be followed by a 24-hour party at Robson Square where Luongo, former mayor Sam Sullivan and Chantal Petitclerc will carry the torch.

Other differences include the “steel blue hue” of the torch and torchbearers’ uniforms and the fact that the flame is lit fresh each day by different First Nations, using traditional methods, like flint and whittle.

On Friday morning, the torch will move through Vancouver’s downtown to Second Beach and will be taken across False Creek in an adaptive rowing vessel.

At Vanier Park it will board a Sea King helicopter and will be flown to the frigate HMCS Vancouver in English Bay.

It will return up False Creek in the patrol vessel HMCS Orca and then by navy zodiac to the Plaza of Nations.

Latest From ...