"I had a dream of someday running a marathon", he said
Tim has run marathons in 19 states, and he's trying to get to all 50.
"What a wonderful way to see a state and a city than by running 26 miles through the city."
Running a marathon in every state is a monumental accomplishment for even an elite athlete. But for Tim, its amazing, because he only has one leg. He lost his left leg in a motorcycle accident when he was 21. He broke both arms, most of his ribs, broke his hip in 15 places, and lost most of his teeth. He was in a coma for 3 months, and in the hospital for a year. The doctors told him he may never walk again.
"I remember thinking I don't want to live if I can't walk, if I can't go to the bathroom. It's terrible."
But after the amputated his leg above the ankle, he taught himself to walk again, one step at a time.
"Every step was a gift-literally," he said. "I didn't want to run outside because people might laugh at me, so I ran in the basement."
He ran some 5K's on his prosthetic leg, which he ended up breaking. Then one day, he saw a billboard of a runner with a blade.
"I almost crashed my car," he said. "That's what I need! This is like Superman's leg. I'm a super hero..nothing can hold me back!"
That attitude has become his mantra. And now he runs marathons. H sometimes drives there, and sleeps in the back of his SUV, and gets up and runs the race. He's an inspiration to everyone who sees him.
"I was at a race in Oregon and a lady was there with her son, 4 or 5 years old. He said 'Mommy, look! That man only has one leg!'. She put her hand over his mouth and said 'Don't say that. You'll embarrass him.' I said, 'No, it's OK. Do you want to touch it?' And I told him, 'Yes, I only have one leg, and I'm running a marathon. Imagine what you can do with 2 legs'."
A great lesson for all of us.
Tim is training for his first triathlon at Daybreak on June 8th. I'm guessing he will do very well.