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Success Stories

Getting amputees

back on their feet. 


Cinthya Rodriguez of Peru wrote to us and told us the story of her mother, Giovanna. Cinthya is a cyclist who competes internationally. In 2017, her mother, Giovanna was hit by a truck while riding on a motorbike alongside her daughter in a group training ride. Her leg was severely injured which led to amputation. Cinthya wrote in desperation, she wanted to support her mom as she had supported her throughout her life and specifically, in support of her professional cycling pursuits.

Our LEGacy Room is where we store prosthetic parts donations. We use parts locally whenever possible, but some parts remain, allowing us to work with international partners to supply the needs of amputees in need across the world. We were quickly able to find parts that Giovanna needed, packed them up and sent them to Peru.

Cinthya wrote soon after we sent the parts saying, “My family and I are so grateful with tears in our eyes for what you did for my mom, she didn't expect this to come so soon.”

Giovanna wrote, “God bless you and your family for giving me what was impossible for us to get. I now have a leg that improves my quality of life. Thank you very much to your organization. From Iquitos Peru, I say goodbye to you.”

Cinthya and Giovanna. Giovanna is pictured with her former prosthetic as she carried the torch in the Parapan games in Lima in 2019. This prosthetic caused considerable hip pain for Giovanna.

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In 2019, Limbs for Life provided a limb to Adam, who lives and works in Texas. He lost both legs over a three-year period from a spider bite and infections.

He was having difficulty adapting as the feet were not appropriate for his level of activity and mobility.

We recently sent Adam two matching replacement feet better suited to his needs. Within a week, Adam said he was “walkin’, talkin’ and living life!” “Just having the correct feet lifted me out of the wheelchair. I am working at a job I love with great people around me, no pain, no being sick for months, able to get up and about. I have no words, it is 10x easier!”

Adam continued “I want to be the best that I can be. I’m at a loss for words. Thank you and God bless!”

Want to help Texas amputees in need like Adam? The Anderson Foundation is matching gifts up to $15,000! Click to donate now.

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Our LFL Board Member John Shelton shares his story. John is a tri-athlete, veteran and amazing volunteer. We are honored by his service on every level.

On September 17, 1985, I was traveling across Classen Blvd. in Oklahoma City on my bike and was broadsided on my left by a car. The guy stopped and looked at me briefly, hopped back in the car and starts dragging me, and the bike, down the street. People were hollering for him to stop. A nurse who was on her way to work at Saint Anthony helped me. The damage to my foot would lead to 13 surgeries to try to save it. The 14th surgery was my amputation.

While in the hospital during the surgeries, I was watching the Iron Man Triathlon in Hawaii on Wide World of Sports. It was a 2.2 miles swim, 112 miles on the bike, and a full 26.2 mile marathon. I called myself a runner at the time, not a triathlete. However, they introduced an amputee during the Iron Man and the tears came. I knew that was something I wanted to do. Seeing him, motivated me to tell the doctor to amputate my lower left leg. The early years after my amputation were difficult with self-doubt, feeling unworthy, and drug addiction. In the early 90’s I tried a couple of triathlons. The first was at the Westside YMCA. I felt like a Pro! On December 27, 1995, I got sober and began running in preparation for my first marathon.

I knew I needed a running blade to complete that task and participate in an Ironman. Once I was able to convince the VA to give me a blade, my life and self-esteem has changed and improved. I consider myself a marathon runner and have run the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. The route passes the place where I was hit on my bike. The OKC event is very uplifting and always provides such a warm welcome at the finish line. After every finish, it is always amazing to be an amputee and know I have completed that feat. In countless marathons, triathlons, and other runs, I’ve grown to appreciate the invention of the running blade as an adaptive device. Through swimming, biking, and running, I found a new lifestyle. God has guided me and I have listened. I am so fortunate to be a triathlete and a veteran. Being asked to serve on the Board of Directors of Limbs for Life has reinforced how far I have come in my life’s journey after going through so much. This group of people has made me feel welcome, important, and loved. I am so fortunate to be part of this organization.

~John Shelton

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