Ron Heagy dove into a wave on the day before his 18th birthday and broke his neck. Since then, he has been a quadriplegic, unable to feel anything from the chest down. Ron chooses to focus on what he can do instead of what he cannot do. By changing his perspective, Ron earned his Master's Degree, became a speaker, published his book, created beautiful oil paintings with his mouth, founded a special needs camp, and fathered a daughter. For over 25 years, he has captivated audiences by inspiring them to overcome any obstacle. His story is a must hear!
Dave Carl is a motivational speaker, author, blogger, and social worker. He was born with spina bifida, a condition where the spinal cord is not fully developed. Because of this, Dave is paralyzed from the waist down and has been in a wheel chair his entire life. He wrote the children's book, Super Cyclist. He has a bachelor's degree in Social Work and gives back to his community in huge ways. Dave is a certified ADA (American with Disabilities Act) Coordinator and he uses his knowledge to teach independent living classes to other physically and developmentally disabled adults.
Shandy Welch was a clinical nurse practitioner in orthopedic medicine when she discovered that she had breast cancer. As part of her treatment, Shandy experienced a double mastectomy. She chose to see her cancer as a new experience that she could learn from and embrace. Now she inspires others to do the same and view life through fresh eyes. Shandy's story is positive and uplifting.
Jim Lagerstrom is a five-time Paralympian, winning numerous medals during a ski racing career that spanned 20 years. Jim lost his leg below the knee when he was five years old. Lagerstrom now works at a prosthetic company, designing and creating artificial limbs so that others can live active lives. He uses the ingenuity that he applied to develop his own legs to enhance the lives of others.
In this episode of A Leg Up On Life, Roni Sasaki interviews Brenda Tyrrell. Brenda is the mother of "Little Bob," who was born with Down Syndrome. Brenda candidly shares some of the frustrations and many of the joys that she experiences while raising a child with a developmental disability. Most importantly, she closes the gap between our fear of being around someone who is "different," and our understanding that they just want to be "normal."
In January of 2003, Clackamas County Sheriff's Seargent Damon Coates was shot in the face by a mentally disturbed 15-year-old boy. The incident devastated Damon's family and left him partially paralyzed. His wife, Tammy stepped into the role of caretaker and decision maker. In this podcast, Tammy Coates shares about how her strong faith in God has enabled her to forgive that teenager and remain faithful to her severely disabled husband.
When Corina Muntean was 29 years old, she began to experience numbness in her legs. Her condition quickly escalated until she was completely paralyzed from the chest down. Her triumphant story of recovery and determination will encourage you to push toward your goals. Corina never gave up on her vision of getting out of a wheelchair and walking once again. Today she is a structural engineer, wife, and mother of three - and she walks without assistance.
On October 18th, 2017, Ana Wakefield was in a devastating head-on collision that changed her life. She suffered a severe brain injury and multiple broken bones in her legs. The doctors were unsure that she would live. But her family's faith and the prayers of many offered a ray of hope. Now, one year later, Ana is on the rough road to recovery. Her relationship with God and her sheer determination keep her going every day. In this podcast, she and her dad share about their journey and the strength that they find in their relationship with Jesus.
Gordon and Jill Viggiano's story is one of determination and triumph. On Gordon's 51st birthday, he suffered a massive stroke that paralyzed the right side of his body, stole his memory, impaired his cognitive processing, and drastically reduced his ability to speak. With an intense drive and the will to succeed, they created a new life for their family. Their story proclaims that we should never settle for less than we want to be.