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They say parents would do anything for their  children. For Rick van Beek, this includes carrying his thirteen year old  disabled daughter as he races in triathlons, half-marathons and other running  races. Rick’s daughter, Maddy, was born with cerebral palsy 13 years ago. She cannot walk or talk and they are not sure if she can see. Nonetheless, Rick began racing alongside his daughter in what he calls: Team Maddy. 

For triathlon events, he pulls her through the  water in a kayak during the swimming portion. Then, she travels in a cart behind  his bike during the bicycling section. Finally, he pushes her in a three-wheel buggy during the running part of the event. It is truly an inspiring story of the love of a parent.

Rick said that he sees the joy Maddy gets when she is outside and feels the breeze in her face. “I am her legs and she is my heart,” he admits. “The emotion drives me or inspires me to do the things I do. Call it inspiration, call it motivation, call it whatever you want. I call it love. That will never fade. Although someday she might not physically be able to be there with me, she will always be  in my heart, cheering me on,” he continues.

See the inspiring video below and for more information, read this article:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2188373/Rick-van-Beek-Devoted-dad-runs-triathlon-carrying-teenager-daughter-cerebral-palsy.html


 
What would you say to people if you knew you only had months to live? What would be your last speech? For Randy Pasch, this was a reality. Randy was a Carnegie Mellon professor who inspired millions with a simple lecture. This lecture was presented to his class on September 18, 2007, which was one month after Randy was told he only had three to six months to live following a new bout with his pancreatic cancer.

The lecture became known as "Randy's Last Lecture" even though he entitled it: "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams." The motivational talk is both inspirational and humorous. Randy discusses some of his childhood dreams like  becoming a pro football player or developing rides for Disney World.
 
After the lecture, Randy co-wrote a book With Jeff Zaslow also called "The Last Lecture". In it, he shared his philosophies about finding the good in others, living generously and overcoming obstacles through hard work. A ten minute version of the speech given on the Oprah Winfrey Show is shown above, but you can see the full lecture here:  http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ji5_MqicxSo
 
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Josh Rivers was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.  In December 2010, while at the Great Alaskan Bush Company, a man started randomly shooting at various people for no apparent reason.  There was no altercation, no argument, no warning that the shooting was going to occur.

Josh was struck by three bullets, one of which, lodged in his spine and remains there today. “I knew what was going on and I just had to keep my eyes shut,” said Josh.  “I was just lying on the floor waiting for a sign that everything was safe.”

Josh survived that random shooting the sent bullets through his arms, chest and spine, but the bullet in his spine left him paralyzed from the waist down. Josh now spends his time learning a new reality in his wheel chair. If you just watch the video below, you can see the daily struggles Josh faces as he moves forward with his life.

I’m sure Josh had his share of pity parties in the beginning, but he has decided to use his incident to inspire others. Although doctors told him he will never walk again, he never gave up. He started doing research about his condition and found out about the Bioness, which is a device that might help him walk again someday. This device is designed for patients with spinal cord injuries and uses electrical stimulation to help people regain mobility. He wants to learn to walk in order to inspire others who have sustained similar injuries.

 “I’m hoping to be able to walk again. To the people who have experienced something like this, be thankful you are still alive. To the people who haven’t, just knmow that it can happen anywhere anytime and it can change your life in the blink of an eye,” Josh said.

Read more about the story here:

http://www.azfamily.com/news/Random-Shooting-Victim-Hopes-to-Walk-Again-and-Inspire-Others-164691896.html


 
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If you want to be inspired, just watch this video about Travis Mills. It is a testament to his courage and motivation to keep moving forward with his life after a horrific incident. United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills is in the 82nd Airborne and was critically injured during his third tour of duty in Afghanistan.

While on routine patrol, Travis was injured when an IED (improvised explosive device) blew up causing him to be thrown backward violently. When he came to his senses, he saw the medic putting a tourniquet on each of his arms and his legs. Ultimately, portions of both his arms and legs had to be amputated. He is only the fourth quadruple amputee from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars to actually survive his injuries.

After numerous surgeries, Travis began the long and difficult road to recovery. Using his wife and young baby daughter as motivation, Travis worked tirelessly to regain some ability to do activities of daily living. It is hard to even imagine the difficulties of his rehab at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

Usually, if you have a leg issue, you rely on your arms and hands with crutches or walkers to get around. If you have issues with your upper extremities, you can use your feet to get around and even learn to pick things up. But Travis had to relearn everything without any of his extremities. Using prosthetics and other medical devices, Travis has really learned to live in his new reality. His amazing strength should be an inspiration to anyone going through a tough time.

For more information, visit his website: www.travismills.org


 
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Don Piper is a living miracle. After being dead for an hour and a half, he came back to life and now shares his message of hope with millions world-wide. Don is an ordained Baptist pastor

In January 1989, Don was killed in a horrific car crash that cut his legs in two. His heart actually stopped beating for one and a half hours. Behind him, on that lonely highway, there was another pastor who was waiting in the long line of stopped traffic. That pastor felt compelled to come and pray over Don’s body and he convinced the police to let him do so.

After an hour and a half of praying and singing songs over Don’s lifeless body, an amazing thing happened. Don came back to life and began to sing. He was cut out of the vehicle and taken to the ICU.

Don was alive, but he would face a long recovery. He endured dozens of painful surgeries to fix his bones and had rods and other devices fused into his legs to help them heal. It took him several years to heal and learn to walk again. “I knew I was not going to be the same physically, because of apparently how badly I was injured. But I also know that I had to get better and share my message,” said Don Piper.

            Don wrote a book about his ordeal called: 90 Minutes in Heaven. He has spoken to over three thousand audiences around the world and his book has sold over 5 million copies. He appeared on NBC’s Today Show, Dateline NBC, ABC’s Nightline, Fox Network, and the O’Reilly Factor. He is a frequent guest on Trinity Broadcasting Network’s 700 Club and has also appeared on D. James Kennedy’s Coral Ridge Hour. He has been interviewed by literally hundreds of radio stations, newspapers and magazines all over the world.

            Don has decided to be a Minister of Hope and he is using his second chance to spread this message of hope world-wide. To see more, go to: www.donpiperministries.com