My name is Gary. I am 21 years old and I am a right knee disarticulation amputee. I lost my leg to osteosarcoma when I was 14, by that time I had undergone several unsuccessful limb- salvage surgeries. I began my journey into prosthetics about 10 months after my amputation. Over the years I have had a lot of ups and downs and have tried many types of prosthetic limbs before finding a design that fit my active lifestyle.
I am currently enrolled in college. In my spare time I play wheelchair basketball with Santa Rosa Blazers and the Sacramento Royals I also enjoy celebrating creativity and spend a lot of time painting, organizing art exhibits, producing hip hop music and rapping with local music collectives.
Being an amputee has had a huge impact on my character. I may seem physically limited to some people but I have never felt limited in obtaining my dreams or becoming the person I want to be.
I was a really active person before I lost my limb and it was difficult to cope with the idea that there are certain things that came natural to me that were forever going to be difficult to do again. But I survived cancer! As a result I see the world through a different lens and have met some great people and accomplish some amazing things that I would not have thought possible.
If I could give any advice to new amputees it would be never give up, you will find your limits and you will find what works for you in time if you remain persistent.