Over the next few days, a gentleman is walking from Atlanta to Birmingham along the Silver Comet and Chief Ladiga Trails to raise funds which will help others who are missing limbs. Mark Sweatman will lead the 120-mile walk from November 7-17 to benefit Limbs for Life, a global nonprofit organization which provides prostheses for those who can not afford them. Mark is accepting donations in support of his walk on his website at, AmputatedYetWhole.com.
Sweatman lost his left leg to Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy at age 38. While walking in Piedmont Park, Sweatman suffered a simple broken foot. That break led to RSD, a painful and debilitating neurological condition that could have spread to his whole leg. Amputation below the knee was the result. Sadly, Sweatman’s ordeal was made even more painful because his parents had rejected him because he is gay.
After the surgery, his life fell into a downward spiral. He lost his job, went through his savings, and his partner left him. Sweatman tried to take his life and credits his rescue dog, Diamond, with helping him overcome future thoughts of suicide. Sweatman decided to change his life and he found inner strength and new purpose by focusing on what he does have instead of what he’s missing. He now mentors other amputees and wrote a book titled “Amputated Yet Whole” to inspire others to embrace their challenges.
Sweatman is walking with Angela to give him mental, emotional, and spiritual support. He was very blessed that he was always able to afford prostheses when he needed them, even though he went through some very bad financial crises after losing his job and his savings. Therefore, he can’t, in good consciousness, let those in need, especially children and veterans, go without something so vital to their mobility and independence when he has the ability to do something about it. That’s why he is doing this walk from Atlanta to Birmingham.
Sweatman feels like this walk is something that needs to be done and he is hoping he can raise a lot of money so people can afford prostheses. He welcomes all who can donate and/or walk with him. He will walk 12 to 16 miles a day for 10 days. And he is posting daily vlog videos from the walk! To learn more information about Sweatman and his walk, go to: www.amputatedyetwhole.com.
Follow him on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/WMarkSweatmanOfficialPage and on Twitter @WMarkSweatman.
- Amputee leads walk from Atlanta to Birmingham (onlineathens.com)