Behind The Mettle
He has been defying the odds since birth.
A rare bone disorder resulted in his lower legs failing to form completely and caused his parents to face an emotionally devastating decision. They would either have to amputate both of his legs below the knee, or leave him with two virtually useless limbs that would restrict his mobility to a wheelchair. At less than 18 months old, they elected to amputate both legs and hoped for the best.
Through years of adversity, he continues to face each challenge head-on. Educating millions about life with limb difference is his passion. His YouTube channel, appearances on multiple TV shows, and speaking engagements help him to positively impact the community and follow that passion. Alex brings an unmatched energy to any room he enters.
His dedication and zest for life are immediately palpable, and his unique storytelling will leave any audience full of energetic inspiration. What initially left his parents at a loss has become everyone’s gain… without a doubt, he represents the definition of Mettle.
How I found my mettle… Growing up, I ignored my differences. Sure… I had to sit out in gym class, I could only walk “the mile” during P.E. class, I couldn’t compete in sports alongside my friends, and I may have had to take a rest a lot more often when we’re out and about… but other than that, I didn’t mention it much, wore pants often, and felt like this was just my fate.
I went to Shriners Hospital for Children for free prosthetic legs. They provide this until you’re 18. So when I was 18, I was told that was the last pair of legs I’d get for life. This shocked me.
I was confused as to how I would go from getting a new pair every other year, to then just this one pair supposedly lasting me for the rest of my life now. Plus, I still didn’t have those running blades I’ve always been asking for… and now that I’m 18, I decided to take a BIG step for myself and start working out, so I could really use them!
That’s when I saw a double amputee in a commercial, running in her blades. This sparked a curiosity in me to learn more, because I KNEW I was missing something. I was always told the blades were for Paralympians and athletes. But, how would you even get to that level if you didn’t have blades? It didn’t add up. Whatever. Let’s do this.
I started Googling questions about prosthetics, which led to me finding yet another amputee in the media… but this time, it was YouTube. Not so traditional, but just as impactful, I learned…
I took a bionic baby step by reaching out to this amputee on YouTube, as I saw she was a local to me, by some absolute miracle. This tiny step changed my life forever, catapulting me in a new exciting direction of challenges as I try to get running blades, begin acting, begin sharing my story, and more.
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Saint Louis, MO