Amputee Support Network

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Amputee Support Network

Kevin - Greater Vancouver and Lower Mainland - Below Knee

My name is Kevin Geurtsen, I am 25 years old. I was previously playing college basketball on scholarship, then enrolled in the Canadian Armed Forces as an infantry soldier with plans of becoming a member of the RCMP.

Three years ago I was involved in an ATV accident, breaking my back leaving me an incomplete paraplegic and tearing off my left calf muscle. One year later I contracted the "flesh eating disease" in my right leg from open sores on my toes. After battling infections for two years from acquiring an ulcer on my right foot, due to having a "drop foot" from my spinal cord injury, I was faced with a decision of having an elective below knee amputation.

It took me quite awhile to weigh out my options, look at my quality of life at that present time, and then researching and learning about life having a prosthetic leg. Needless to say it was not an easy choice. Luckily I had the benefit of sitting down talking to a few guys who had similar problems dealing with pain they had experienced over the years and how their life's had changed dramatically after the surgery. After talking with them, It was still my decision in the end, so I researched. And then researched some more. I had made my decision, my leg was amputated Sept 6th 2005.

The months following were a true testament of determination, hard work and patience. I can't say it was easy, damn frustrating at times, but with months of dedication, exercising with my physiotherapist and working with my prosthetist, I know it was the right decision I had made. Before my amputation I had no form of physical activity due to my previous disabilities, in constant pain, going through depression thinking life as I knew it was over.

Life now has changed dramatically, I am able to do things I never thought possible. I recently walked 10 km in a walk to find a cure for MS, then another 10 km in the Vancouver Sun Run which my physiotherapist joined me in, these are just a few of many I plan to enter. I now have taken an interest playing basketball in a city wheelchair league, golfing, and plan to one day soon get back to slalom water-sking. The opportunities are endless, where there's a will there's a way?

I'd love to help with any questions or concerns you or your family may have. My email address is kgeurtsen@hotmail.com.

All the best and look forward to hearing from you.

Cheers, Kevin Geurtsen

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