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Junior Race Director • Patient Champions • Last Man Running
The Junior Race Directors of
Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children
Each year, a Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children (TSRHC) patient serves as the Junior Race Director, representing the thousands of children treated at the hospital each year. In this role, the Junior Race Director helps participants and sponsors understand how TSRHC benefits from the support of friends like the marathon. The Junior Race Director takes part in race-day festivities by officially counting down the start of the race, offering pre-race words of encouragement to participants as well as meeting and greeting spectators and race finishers.
Meet the 2012 Junior Race Director!
|Donate in Christopher’s honor||
Christopher of Grapevine
Christopher, age 11, of Grapevine, Texas, has been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children (TSRHC) since November 2001. This remarkable young man serves as an inspiration, demonstrating resilience in the face of adversity.
His journey at the hospital began several weeks after he was born without a fibula bone in his lower left leg, a condition called Fibular Hemimelia. At the age of 10 months, with advice from TSRHC doctors and patient families that had experienced a similar situation, his parents made the difficult decision to have their son’s affected leg amputated. Even though great uncertainty lie ahead, Christopher’s parents, Scott and Niki, put their trust in the doctors and nurses at TSRHC.
To say he was in the hands of one of the best would be an understatement. Christopher’s doctor, Dr. Tony Herring, Chief of Staff Emeritus at TSRHC, literally wrote the book on pediatric orthopaedics. He is the editor of Tachdjian’s Pediatric Orthopaedics, the most highly regarded and widely used text book in doctoral resident training programs across the country. Herring, along with TSRHC’s world-renowned staff has always encouraged Christopher to focus on his unlimited potential, rather than allowing his condition to define what he can do.
However, Christopher does not need much extra encouragement. His adventurous spirit has lead him to pursue many activities including mountain bike racing, golf, soccer, baseball, snow skiing and hunting — just to name a few!
At age 9, Christopher discovered the Endeavor Games, a three-day event for athletes of various challenges held each year in Edmond, Okla. The games are a perfect outlet for his love of sports and competition. Christopher participates in the track and field and cycling events, winning numerous medals since he began. Considering this event serves as the qualifier for the United States Paralympic Team, Christopher is on his way to being an inspiration to not only his community, but to the world.
This budding athlete is also a favorite among his teachers. He was asked to be a greeter at his school, a coveted honor among students at Johnson Elementary in Southlake. According to his parents, Christopher has never used his condition as an excuse to decline participation in any activity. With his inspiring range of interests and accomplishments, Christopher’s role as the Dallas Marathon Junior Race Director is likely to be just the beginning of his time in the spotlight.
Meet our former Junior Race Directors
The following Junior Race Directors have proudly represented TSRHC in previous years.
Mabeth – 2011
Mabeth of Dallas, Texas has been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children (TSRHC) since July 2010. His journey to the hospital has changed his life, and his outlook, for the better. During a trip to Oklahoma on July 4, 2010, Mabeth suffered an accident involving an all terrain vehicle, which severely injured his right leg. Nine days later, Mabeth was referred to TSRHC and became a patient. An otherwise young and healthy boy before the accident, the routine parts of his life such as school and playing with friends shifted to prolonged stays at the hospital and a series of operations to correct the fractures to his leg. In October of that year, Mabeth and his family decided to amputate his leg below the knee. His resilience was apparent when, two weeks later, he was re-learning to walk with a prosthetic leg that the hospital made for him. Despite the pain, Mabeth was determined to overcome the challenge to walk again—and he did.
A supportive community of family and friends has proven to be a stronghold for Mabeth—he has even found a friend in Nathan, his prosthetist at TSRHC, who is also an amputee. Whether it’s his parents’, Gina and Johannes, encouragement to continue to be involved with the sports and activities he loves or his welcoming nature, those who know Mabeth want to be a part of his life. In fall 2010, the professional soccer team, FC Dallas, surprised Mabeth with a visit to the hospital after learning about his love for the sport, which he began playing at age 4. In the summer of 2011, Mabeth traveled to Germany with a soccer team from Comets Academy. Although he did not compete in the tournament, the coach considers him a part of the team.
In addition to soccer, Mabeth loves to play basketball, ride his bicycle and play golf. Mabeth’s mom recalls crying after his amputation, and when he noticed she was upset she remembers him saying, “Mom, this is nothing, Mom.” When you meet TSRHC patient Mabeth, it’s hard not to become inspired.
Ryanne – 2010
Ryanne of Mineola, Texas, captivates everyone she meets with her exuberant nature and confidence to try new things. Faced with adversity since birth, Ryanne was adopted from Kazakhstan in the former Soviet Union in 2005 at the young age of 2, at which time she became a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. Born with a condition called amniotic band syndrome, which constricts the growth of extremities including arms, legs and fingers, Ryanne is a double amputee and is missing part of her right arm. As part of the orthopaedic care that she receives at TSRHC, the hospital provides Ryanne with prosthetic limbs, which allow her to do the things she loves.
She participates in competitive sports and especially loves to run and race in her racing wheelchair. Along with her gold medals in track and field events, Ryanne is particularly proud of her archery accomplishments as she uses her teeth to draw back and shoot. She hopes to one day compete in archery for the Paralympics.
She enjoys spending time and playing with her siblings—brother Nikolas, and sisters Haydn and Rina, who were also adopted from Kazakhstan. The Carr family was recently in the spotlight when they received a new home as part of ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition television show.
Ryanne is a shining example of determination and self-confidence. She was excited to serve as Junior Race Director as a way to give back to the hospital for her medical care and numerous prostheses the hospital has provided.
Robert – 2009
Robert of Plano, Texas, has been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children since he was 7 weeks old. He was born with developmental dysplasia (DDH) of his right hip, or an abnormal hip socket formation. When Robert was 6 months old, he was placed in a soft, fabric brace, in an attempt to help keep his hip from being dislocated. A short 5 months later and to help correct his hip further, Robert underwent surgery at TSRHC. He spent the next two months in a hip spica cast, used to immobilize the hips and that usually extends from the mid-chest down to below the knee. At age 5, Robert underwent his second surgery and was again placed in a hip spica cast. During his recovery, Robert re-learned how to walk with the help of physical therapists. Now pain free and walking independently, Robert excels in sports. He plays baseball and golf and enjoys running and swimming. According to his family, Robert has a special name for his affected right hip calling it his “power bionic hip.” His exuberant, happy-go-lucky nature perfectly compliments his love for acting and the arts. He plays the piano, is a fan of Pokémon and loves “American Idol.”
Morgan – 2008
Morgan, of McKinney, Texas, has been a patient at TSRHC since August 2003. She receives treatment at the hospital for idiopathic scoliosis (curvature of the spine) and had surgery at TSRHC to correct her curve in September of that same year. Morgan, a star forward-center on her school’s basketball team, is active in basketball and travels around the country playing competitively with her team. She hopes to get a scholarship to play at the collegiate level. Aside from playing basketball and attending school, Morgan loves to cook and spend time with her friends.
Jaclynne – 2007
Jac, a Frisco, Texas, resident, has been treated for scoliosis since March 2007 and wears a brace to assist in preventing the curve of her spine. Jac has participated in cheerleading since age 5 and recently was chosen to cheer at her school. Jac is a huge fan of TSRHC, as the doctors have encouraged her to continue cheering despite her scoliosis. She also cheers competitively, plays the piano and performed in a stage production of the hit movie Disney’s “High School Musical,” through the drama department at her school.
Kelsey – 2006
Rowlett, Texas, resident Kelsey Andrews has been a patient at TSRHC since she was 3 weeks old. Kelsey wears a prosthesis on her right leg and is treated in the hospital’s prosthetics clinic. She is a successful student and enjoys student council and acting. Kelsey loves the doctors at TSRHC and appreciates their encouragement to overcome challenges in her life. Kelsey has an incredibly positive attitude and motivates others to approach hardships with a positive attitude, as it makes life more fun. She believes that her prosthesis is one way God made her special.
Jordyn – 2005
Jordyn has been a patient at TSRHC since age 5, when her left leg was amputated due to cancer. The hospital has fitted her with numerous prosthetic legs imprinted with designs or “tattoos,” such as flowers, peace signs and smiley faces. Jordyn’s favorite activities include cheerleading, swimming, t-ball, volleyball, gymnastics, theater and volunteering. Even with a demanding schedule, she is on her school’s academic honor roll. Jordyn’s fun-loving personality, love for sports and compassion for the hospital and fellow patients make her an outstanding representative of TSRHC.
Cody – 2004
Born with a condition called sacral agenesis, Cody’s legs were missing the tibias and knees. After several visits with physicians at TSRHC, Tina and Mike McCasland decided to have a portion of their son’s legs amputated, in the hopes that he would be able to walk with prostheses. Cody underwent amputation surgery in January 2003 at 15 months old, and by March 2003, he was fitted with his first prostheses and was walking with assistance. Cody loves to laugh, and he continues to amaze everyone, as he completed his first 5K at age 5 in the summer of 2007. With his great spirit, can-do attitude and award-winning smile, Cody captures the heart of all and surely will be a star athlete.
For more information about Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, please visit www.tsrhc.org or call (214) 559-5000 or (800) 421-1121.
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