In 2014, 8th grader Elijah Mott lost his leg to cancer, but he’s since joined his school’s wrestling team at H.B. Lee Middle School, even winning most of his matches.
His teacher and basketball coach, Eddie Schauffler, is responsible in part for helping Mott achieve his remarkable success in wrestling by telling him about another successful wrestler who also has only one leg: 2011 NCAA champion, Anthony Robles.
“I said this guy won, like, ESPN Man of the Year. He’s Anthony Robles, he went to Arizona State and he’s a wrestler,” Schauffler said.
After discovering that Robles was in Portland doing some inspirational speaking, Schauffler arranged for the two to meet.
In the middle of his 4th-period social studies class, Elijah Mott was able to finally meet his inspiration, saying that it was “shocking, like, that he’s here and I got to meet him.”
For Robles, being born with one leg had its challenges, but he told Mott that losing a leg takes much more to overcome. “I just want him to see that I can relate and there’s no limit to what he can achieve,” Robles said.
Robles visited H.B. Lee to inspire Mott, telling him, “Whatever you want to chase, whether it’s wrestling or whatever, you got the heart.”
Meeting his hero, another pespson who faced the same challenges, was quite an experience for Mott. “It’s amazing, amazing,” he said.