Conquering Mount Kilimanjaro Without Arms and Legs – The Inspirational Story of Kyle Maynard
Overcoming a disability is one thing and showing others their capabilities is completely another. Kyle Maynard surely excels at both. From being the first quadruple amputee to ascending Mount Kilimanjaro without any aid from prosthetics, Kyle never let his disabilities come in the way of his dreams.
Maynard was born in 1986 in Washington, D.C., with congenital amputation – a very rare condition that prevents the growth of foetal limbs – leaving him with arms that ended at elbows and his legs at the knees.
But despite his challenging physical condition, Maynard developed a love for sports at an early age and was playing for Collins Hill National Eagles – a local American Football team – at the age of 11.
Further, he developed a love for wrestling and was seen competing to win the title of GNC’s World’s Strongest Teen when he bench pressed 240 lbs for 23 times.
He also began is training in MMA – mixed martial arts – in 2005 and even applied for a licence to fight and was denied permission by the Georgia Athletic and Entertainment Commission. Rather than being disappointed, he saw that fighting was no regulated in Alabama and had his first fight there with Bryn Fry in 2009. He lost the fight to 30-27 based on judge’s decision.
But even this didn’t stop Maynard from being inducted into Wrestling Hall of Fame. He further received the President’s Award for Sport’s Humanitarian Hall of Fame.
A Fighting Chance is a documentary film on him and a portion of proceeds from the sale of DVDs go to benefit wounded veterans. And that seems just the tip of the iceberg given what he has achieved recently.
In January 2012, Maynard went on to become the first quadruple amputee to climb Mount Kilimanjaro without the aid of prosthetics. However, he trained with Dan Adams, his co-leader, in different locations in USA ad had to develop suitable equipment that supported Maynard in his climb that lasted for 10 days.
In 2005, Maynard wrote his autobiography, No Excuses: The True Story of a Congenital Amputee Who Became a Champion in Wrestling and in Life which went on to become New York Times Bestselling book. He’s also named as one of the Top Ten Outstanding Young Americans by U.S. Jaycees.
In 2016, Nike did a commercial on him as part of their series titled “Unlimited” and the video has garnered over 1.5 million views.
Maynard says that ascending Mount Kilimanjaro was his finest hour so far as he carried the ashes of a fallen US veteran Corey Johnson to the top to pay tributes to him.
He’s been all praise by Oprah Winfrey, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Wayne Gretzky and is renowned as one of the most inspiring person and a real champion.
Maynard believes that setting big goals and committing everything to achieve them helps him reach these astronomical heights in his life.