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This amazing 9-year-old, Ezra Frech, is a 2014 Sports Illustrated SportsKid of the Year 2014 nominee for his amazing athletic ability. He plays basketball, football, has a blue belt in karate and has set seven national track and field records.
He also happens to be a below-the-knee amputee. Ezra was born with one finger on his left arm and a leg that was curved. Doctors amputated the curved part of his leg when he was 3, and added his big toe to his left hand. He now wears a prosthetic leg.
Not only is he an incredible athlete and amputee, but he is also an inspiration to kids and people everywhere — regardless of how many limbs they have. It started with a coach that told him to "finish well." That phrase gives Ezra the drive to keep trying and pushing harder to reach his goals.
Recently, he was on The Ellen Show and had this message for kids: "Everyone's different; whether you look different, you think different, or you act different. Mine happens to be I look different, and it's very obvious, but that doesn't mean a kid with four limbs doesn't have any challenges. Everybody has challenges, and everybody stares at everybody. So you just got to know that being different is OK, and you can dream it, and you can hope it and you can make it happen. And I hope that they make it happen."
What a determined and inspirational kid!
Read about this Olympic gold medalist's source of strength.
Finding out your child has a disability can be difficult. Rather than becoming discouraged and focusing on all the "can'ts," do what Ezra did and focus on all the things they can do. Read Dealing with the disability of your child.