Man Born With Spina Bifida Holds Record for Longest “Wheelie”

National   |   Suzanne Ward   |   Feb 15, 2013   |   12:07PM   |   Washington, DC

Prenatal (before birth) testing today results in the early diagnosis of more and more abnormalities from the extremely simple to the very complex.  Sadly, physicians may suggest terminating a pregnancy with only a possible risk of abnormality, probably due to fear of malpractice law suits.

Half of the children targeted for destruction are not even affected by the feared abnormality.  More normal children are killed than handicapped children.

As a society, we must remember that a child’s right to life is given by their Creator, not their parents or even the state.  Being handicapped is not a capital crime and should never carry a death sentence.  In any or all circumstances, we want to protect and support both mother and child.

Studies show that women who choose abortion for genetic reasons have significant grief reactions, a high rate of depression, and flashbacks.  Negative reactions are also seen in the siblings even when they had no direct knowledge of the event.

Approximately 20% of U.S. adults have some sort of disability according to the Centers for Disease Control, or CDC.  Many, many of these individuals accomplish amazing things in spite of great challenges.  Let’s ‘meet’ just a few of them:

Robert Michael Hensel was born in 1969, with a birth defect known as Spina bifida. His disability would limit him to a wheelchair, but he continues to find ways to positively impact people.  Hensel is an award-winning poet and has recently been recognized by the Museum of Disability History in Buffalo, New York.

Hensel is a Guinness World Records holder for the longest non-stop “wheelie” in a wheelchair. His efforts have raised money for wheelchair ramps throughout his hometown of Oswego, New York.   Hensel continues to raise awareness of the many talents and accomplishments made by disabled individuals.  Says Hensel:

  • “Know me for my abilities, not my disability.”
  • “I don’t have dis-ability, I have a different-ability.”
  • “When everyone else says you can’t, determination says, YES YOU CAN.”
  • “No disability or dictionary out there is capable of clearly defining who we are as a person. It’s only when we step out of that labeled box, that our abilities begin to be fully recognized, giving us a better definition of who we truly are as individuals.”

Nick Vujicic is the Founder, President and CEO of Life Without Limbs, a non-profit organization whose mission is to share the Good News of Jesus Christ through his own life.  Born without arms and legs, Nick has shared his message with over 5 million people in 44 different countries.

Nick’s story, outlined in the DVD Biography of a Determined Man of Faith, tells of his childhood in Australia, his turning points and his growing passion to share the love and hope of Jesus Christ.  Nick says, “God does not make mistakes, but He does miracles. I am one. You are too.”

In Georgia, Phillip Richardson is President of the Cherokee County Chapter of Georgia Right to Life. He is also a faithful member of Christ the Redeemer Charismatic Episcopal Church in Canton, Georgia.

Born with Spina bifida, Phillip would face the additional challenges of poverty, physical abuse and homelessness.  “Life is hard,” Phillip says, “but life is worth it.”



Phillip credits his mother with choosing life even under very difficult circumstances.  His hardships, he says, “have not swayed my resolve to be a proactive, compassionate man that is so thankful to have the life that God has given me. How can we logically deny someone’s existence before they even have a chance to overcome and be the success story that so many of us are in awe of?”

Indeed.  We will all face challenging times in our lives.  How can we exclude any one group of people – the disabled preborn – simply because of any presumed problems?  Who knows what wonders they might accomplish when given the chance?

LifeNews Note: After an exciting career in ultrasound, Suzanne found herself deeply involved in the pregnancy center ministries. Now, as Director of Education/Public Relations for Georgia Right to Life, Suzanne is pleased and proud to be a part one of the most respected prolife groups in the nation.