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Sarah HartlandJan 23, 2017 12:00:00 AM2 min read

5 Inspirational People Who Have Overcome Disabilities

In the family TV series “The Inspectors,” Preston is confined to a wheelchair after a tragic car accident leaves him partially paralyzed. Despite his challenges, Preston’s hopeful and mature attitude allows him to do great things. He interns with his mom, a United States Postal Inspector, hangs out with his friends, and has a normal life. His character is inspiring for families and a reminder that attitude is everything. Here are seven stories of real people who, just like Preston, in spite of their disabilities, did great things that inspire all of us:

Nick Vujicic

Nick is an Australian Christian evangelist and motivational speaker who was born without arms or legs. His ministry is called Life Without Limbs, and Nick travels the world speaking to thousands of people each year. His inspiring story and words of encouragement will bring a smile to your face.

Bethany Hamilton

Famous for her biography, “Soul Surfer,” which was later produced as a movie starting Dakota Fanning and Carrie Underwood, Bethany Hamilton is a surfer who lost her left arm to a shark when she was 13 years old. Bethany didn’t let that keep her down though, and her story has inspired countless young girls to follow their dreams, no matter the obstacles.

Annie Clark

Annie Clark is a remarkable young girl who won a handwriting award when she was 7 years old. What’s so special about this achievement is that Annie was born without hands.

“Annie has always been very, very determined, very self-sufficient in dressing herself and feeding herself,” her dad told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette back in 2012. “She can ride a bike. She swims. She is just determined that there’s nothing she can’t do.”

Aaron “Wheelz” Fotheringham

Aaron has been in a wheelchair most of his life due to spina bifida, but that doesn’t keep him from extreme sports. He is known as an extreme wheelchair athlete, adapting tricks from BMX and skateboarding. Check out his cool moves in the video below:



Palmer Harston Williams

Palmer was paralyzed from the waist down in a car accident when she was eight years old. That didn’t stop her from living life and serving others, though. At age nineteen, she traveled to South Africa to serve AIDS orphans. She shared her story in this Guideposts article.

One particular moment she shared happened after her wheelchair got stuck in the mud:

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw people running toward me. Children, some older ones, some younger. Two of the oldest grabbed the handlebars and the others pushed me forward. The wheels came free. The kids shouted with delight.

“Thank you!” I said, surprised. “Aren’t you sweet!”

The children laughed. “You help us,” one of the older boys said. “We help you.”

You help us. We help you. That echoed in my ears all day.

For more inspiration, watch “The Inspectors” on You can watch this inspirational drama series and hundreds of other family movies, TV shows, and documentaries for free during your one-week trial.


Sarah Hartland

Sarah Hartland knew she wanted to be a writer from the time she wrote her first short story in the fourth grade. By the time she was in high school, she had written two novellas and countless short stories. It was her love of storytelling that led her into marketing and media.

Sarah freelanced throughout her time at Colorado Christian University, where she graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration. At CCU, Sarah competed in speech and debate across the country, securing multiple awards and a national debate championship. She co-lead CCU's first-ever broadcast media program, CCU.TV, and served as the program's Student Producer during her senior year.

When she's not writing blog posts or editing a video, Sarah loves to swing dance, ski, travel, or visit her seven younger siblings in Montana.