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Athlete Delivers Inspiring Message to Macedonia Students

Motivational speaker, author and ESPY-award-winning athlete Kyle Maynard shared his story with students at Macedonia Elementary School.

Kyle Maynard describes his first wrestling match, and how he went from 35 straight losses to winning 36 varsity matches his senior year in high school. Credit: Cherokee County School District
Kyle Maynard describes his first wrestling match, and how he went from 35 straight losses to winning 36 varsity matches his senior year in high school. Credit: Cherokee County School District
Macedonia Elementary School students had the opportunity to hear an inspiring message from motivational speaker, author and ESPY-award-winning athlete Kyle Maynard last week.

Maynard's visit to the school on Wednesday reinforced the school's theme this year of "Dream It, Believe It, Achieve It."

Maynard was born with a condition known as quadruple congenital amputation; his arms end just above the elbows, and his legs end above the knee. Despite his physical disability, Maynard's parents pushed him to be as independent as possible.

He played youth and high school sports, including wrestling and football, and went on to set two world records in weight lifting. Maynard won the 2004 ESPY Award in 2004 for Best Athlete with a Disability, and was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2005.

Maynard's stories told to the students illustrated the power of never giving up. He challenged himself daily and progressed from taking 45 minutes to put on one sock the first time he tried to dress himself, to becoming the first man to crawl on all fours up Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa.

He drives himself to speaking engagements, and, perhaps most intriguing to students, can send text messages on a regular smartphone, he told the audience.

A special guest came to Macedonia for Kyle's presentation. Johnston Elementary School student Memphis Lafferty, who is also a quadruple amputee, came to hear the Maynard's message. Memphis contracted bacterial meningitis at six months, and lost his limbs as a result of the disease.

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