Mallory Weggemann's worst nightmare became a reality on January 21, 2008 when a complication during a routine epidural injection left her paralyzed from the belly button down. "I laid down on a gurney and never got up," Weggemann says. "Everything that I knew for 18 years of my life changed in literally the blink of an eye." Now, at the age of 24, she's vying for your support to learn how to walk again.
As a T10 complete paraplegic, Weggemann will never naturally walk again. But with the help of leg braces and arm crutches, she can learn to mimic the motions. The catch? Her insurance won't cover the cost of the braces or rehab.
Instead of giving up on her dream she launched "Against All Odds — The Journey of New Mobility (opens in new tab)" on crowdsourcing website Indiegogo and is asking for public donations to fundraise $50,000. Once the campaign ends on October 1, she plans to help another paraplegic with a similar goal.
Weggemann's already a pro at making her dreams come true. She swam competitively since the age of seven and took a short hiatus after her diagnosis. Just four months later, she met with a coach and started training again; even after doctors and friends said it was too soon. One year later she broke her first set of world records, and in 2012 she won the gold medal at the Paralympic Games in London.
Weggemann's determination is inspirational, and with her crowd funding campaign's deadline right around the corner, she's meeting with doctors and planning her trip to the Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan. Check out her campaign at www.indiegogo.com (opens in new tab). We can't wait to see her stand on the podium after she wins her next gold medal in Rio, 2016!
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