Before the crash I was a keen marathon runner, and as we recovered I was looking into the possibility of running again. It didn't take long to unearth Sarah Reinertsen’s story (same left leg above-knee amputation, and an inspirational endurance athlete!). Soon we were exchanging emails and Sarah was providing hints and tips on running and cycling. On Sarah's website we were captivated by SarahBear and just had to order one. She sits quietly on our hall stand, and is very popular with visitors to the house. Especially younger ones. As a teacher, my wife was moved by the idea of a cuddly toy to help amputee children as well as being an invaluable tool to teach all children about disability.
Recovering from the accident and rebuilding our lives has been jolly difficult, but our faith and our friends have been of immeasurable support. We have been trying to turn our experiences to some good use through speaking engagements. We've told our story to about 40 audiences in businesses, schools, athletic groups and churches, with the emphasis on things you can do to maximize your chances of recovery. The main message is to have a hope and a future. SarahBear accompanies us when we speak, and generally attracts questions and comments.
We gave another SarahBear to our prosthetic company ‘Prosthetic Science’ here in The Woodlands, and yet another to our daughter in England. SarahBear is a brilliant concept to help us amputees feel special rather than abnormal, and certainly brings a smile and even a tear.
I competed in my first sprint distance triathlon in May 2011. My running distances and pace are improving, and I would love to think that I might compete in another marathon at some point. SarahBear is a reminder of the encouragement I’ve received from Sarah Reinertsen, and we feel pretty special too.
Chris & Denise Arthey