The prosthetic legs of a double amputee and soon-to-be high school wrestling captain were stolen from a gym closet in California last week, putting his dreams of winning a state championship or even wrestling this season in doubt.
Brett Winters, a senior at Pacific High School in San Bernardino, California, was born without tibia bones in his legs. As a baby, his mother was told by doctors that Winters could either spend life in a wheelchair or amputate his legs.
“So, I was amputated at 8-and-a-half months old and I got my first set of legs at 10-and-a-half months old,” Brett Winters said, according to KABC.
The senior — who has its own prosthetic legs specifically for wrestling — was set to become captain this year.
He uses different pairs of legs depending on what activity he’s doing, whether it’s walking, running, playing football and wrestling. Winters told the outlet he’s tried practicing without his wrestling legs after they vanished, but it leaves him in a lot of pain.
“Right now, practicing? It hurts to even practice,” Winters said.
One of the prosthetic legs was recovered, but the other is still missing.
The San Bernardino City Unified School District has offered to replace the legs, but the fitting process is arduous and it’s possible they won’t arrive this wrestling season for the high school senior, according to the outlet.
This year would have been his last shot to win a state championship or simply compete in his final year at school.
“I was planning on going to CIF this year again or possible state championships and winning it all, but I can’t because my wrestling legs are gone,” Winters told KABC. “Out of all my sports that I did at Pacific High School, this was the one sport that I could actually do and this was the one sport that I was able to do very well.”
“I don’t know if I am wrestling at all this year,” Winters said.