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Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Disabled boy, 4, receives prosthetic blade for Christmas just like his hero Jonnie Peacock

By DAVID WILKES

Rio jumps for joy after he receives the surprise Christmas gift from Santa (Dorset Orthopaedic's Bob Watts)

Like many little boys, four-year-old Rio Woolf dreams of following in the footsteps of his sporting idols.
And his chances of achieving that ambition have taken a giant leap forward – thanks to some help from his biggest hero.
A delighted Rio received a hi-tech running blade for Christmas after Britain’s Paralympic sprint champion Jonnie Peacock heard of his plight.
‘I really love my new special leg,’ he said. ‘Now I can run about and do lots of things I’ve never done before.’

Rio was inspired to start running after meeting his hero Paralympian runner Jonnie Peacock

Rio, from Bushey Heath, Hertfordshire, was born without a shinbone, knee or ankle joint, and had his lower right leg amputated at 14 months.
He was originally fitted with a rigid NHS prosthetic limb, but it slowed him down when he ran. Peacock, 19, who won 100m gold and broke the Paralympic record at the London Games this summer, put Rio’s parents in touch with experts at a prosthetic limbs clinic after meeting the family at an event.

Rio holds his new limb that has been decorated with a picture of the cartoon Fireman Sam

Dorset Orthopaedic, based in Ringwood, Hampshire, offered to help for free after watching a video of Rio running. Now there’s a spring in his step after the £4,000 lightweight carbon-fibre blade – decorated with his favourite character Fireman Sam – was fitted on Christmas Eve.

Rio with his proud parents Juliette and Trevor. They are now raising money to fit him out with new legs as he grows up

His parents Trevor, 47, a bathroom fitter, and Juliette, 44, are equally overjoyed.
Mrs Woolf said: ‘It’s a dream come true for Rio and is the perfect Christmas present. He is over the moon and very excited and after it was fitted he couldn’t stop jumping up and down.
‘He’s been so captivated watching people running in the Paralympics with their “special legs”, as he calls them, and now he can run too.

Standing tall: Rio's blade is 150g lighter than his old NHS prosthetic

source: dailymail

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