Inspirational Disability Stories of Success and Achievements                       Home

Many people who have a disability don't let it prevent them from leading full and rich lives, indeed some are an inspiration to both disabled and non-disabled people alike. Below is a list of disabled people who have achieved outstanding success despite their disability.

Stephen Wampler climbs El Capitan, the famed mountain in Yosemite National Park. He was born with severe
Cerebral Palsy and he uses a power chair, but he now feels fortunate in life and he wouldn’t change it for anything!

Stephen Hawking is probably one of the world's best known high achievers with a disability. He is an internationally renowned
physicist / mathematician who suffers from Motor Neurone Disease. At 35 he was Cambridge's first Gravitational Physics Profes-
sor and received the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics Award. He has written a best selling book which was later made into a
film called A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes.

Susan Crawford Audé (born October 31, 1952) is a former TV news anchor who worked for WIS-TV in Columbia,
South Carolina from 1978 until 2006. Aude did so from a wheelchair having been paralyzed in a 1978 car accident.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt became the 32nd President of the United States. He contracted Polio in 1921 which left him paralysed
from the waist down. Refusing to accept his paralysis he tried different therapies and methods to try and walk and did master
walking short distances using iron braces and a cane. He was careful not to be seen in a wheelchair in public. He established a foundation to help others with Polio and directed the March of Dimes program which eventually funded an effective vaccine.

Oscar Pistorius' reputation as the "fastest man on no legs" is gaining momentum with every race. A double ampu-
tee, the South African phenomenon is the world record holder in his category for the 100, 200 and 400 meters
Born without the fibula in both legs, Pistorius was only 11 months old when his parents made the heart-wrenching decision to have his limbs amputated below the knee. He says he never really knew anything different. As a child
he announced to his father that one day he would play in the Super 8 rugby event, and this would characterize his future approach to life. He did indeed play rugby, water polo and tennis as a schoolboy.

Another successful politician, Pat Stack is a left wing revolutionary and part of the Socialist Workers Party committee. A child
born from a Thalidomide pregnancy he uses a wheelchair. A great political mind and brilliant orator he holds meetings every year
at Marxism in London and wrote 'Stack on the Back' for the Socialist Review until 2004.

Raquel Began competing in the Regional athletics championships for the Disabled at the age of 12, competing in
both track and field events until the age of 15, collecting a total of 11 medals, 7 gold, 3 silver and 1 bronze. Track
events included the 100 meters and the 4 x 4 hundred meters relay in which her and her team mates took home gold.

David Blunkett was an MP, Education Secretary, Home Secretary and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions at various times.
He has been blind since birth and has never let this fact hold him back in any aspect of his life.

Metin Senturk became the fastest blind man driving solo with his Guinness-verified speed of 292.89
kilometers per hour (182 mph). Read more here

Diana Golden was unquestionably one of the greatest, most successful, disabled athletes of all time—but she was much more
than that; she was a woman of incredible spirit who overcame tremendous physical and emotional challenges to triumph in her
quest to live fully and completely right up until the end of her short life.

Plenty of words were said about Paralympics, about those people who are doing their best to continue
going in for sports after serious traumas. But what do you think about a man without legs who managed
to reach the top of the Everest, the highest mountain in the world?

A middle-aged man from New Zealand painfully hauled himself up the last few feet to the summit of Mount Everest this week. Nothing so unusual in that - after all, climbing Everest has become so popular that its
slopes are often crowded, and more than 100 people have scaled the mountain already this year - but Mark
Inglis is different: he has no legs.

Javier Pena never saw himself working with people with disabilities, let alone leading a 25-member band whose members struggle
with Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy, autism and blindness. Read more here

Tanni Grey Thompson OBE is probably the best known disabled athlete, representing Britain in distances from 100m to 800m.
She has won 14 Paralympic medals including 9 gold's and she has broken over 20 records. She has also won 5 London Marat-
hons as a wheelchair athlete and has become a TV presenter.

Designed to illustrate the potential of people with disabilities, the Super Ability Exhibition is the first
photo collection of its kind to provide a social history of the major achievements of the disabled in Qatar.

Marla Runyan is a legally blind marathon runner and has set several track and field records at the Paralympics in Atlanta, 1996.
She has represented the US at the 2000 Olympics and became the first legally blind athlete to compete in an Olympics.

Erik Weihenmayer became the first blind person to conquer the tallest mountain in the world. This ex school teacher is not only
the first blind person to summit Mount Everest but also one of only about 100 people to successfully summit the highest peaks
of the world's seven continents.

Hein Wagner, a Blind-from-birth Capetonian, drove into the record books when he set a new World Land Speed Record for a
Blind Driver at 322.50 kph (200.393 mph) on the 5.5 km long runway at Upington International Airport in the Northern Cape
Province,South Africa.

Itzhak Perlman is an Israeli-American violinist, conductor and teacher. He is a renowned musician who contracted Polio at age
four and today uses crutches or a wheelchair and plays the violin while seated. In 1986 he received the Medal of Liberty from
President Reagan. He is also an advocate for people with disabilities and promotes laws to allow easier access to buildings and transport.

Karin Murakzko wears a leg brace as a result of spina bifida. She is a doctor who practices a top speciality of
medice: neurosurgery. She has called her own medical condition "a challenge not a barrier." One of her former
patients was quoted by the New York Times: "I never noticed she was handicapped. All I know is that she was
the best doctor and the kindest person I ever met."

Francisco Goya (1746-1828) was a Spanish painter who suffered an illness which left him deaf at 46. He went on to create some
of the best known Spanish art of the 19th Century. He provided inspiration for the work of later artists including Picasso and Monet.

Helen Keller was an American author, political activist and lecturer who was blind, deaf and mute. She was the first deaf and
blind person to be awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Albert Einstein, the famous mathematician and physicist, had a learning disability and did not speak until he was three years
old. He found maths and writing difficult at school but went on to become one of the best known scientists of all time winning the
Nobel Prize for Physics in 1921.

Michael R Browne for Gowrings Mobility:Leading the way in wheelchair accessible disabled vehicles. With a range of new and
used mobility vehicles. and