Shaquem Griffin is an inspiration to many.
The Seattle Seahawks linebacker lost his left hand at the age of 4, but he did not lose sight of his dreams to one day make it to the NFL.
Now in his second year in Seattle, Griffin is making dreams come true for others. On Saturday ahead of the Portland Trail Blazers quadruple overtime game where Griffin was in attendance, he gifted 10-year-old Izzy Turkington a new pair of Össur running prosthetics.
“These look awesome and I can’t wait to run,” Turkington, who was born with quad congenital limb differences, said after being surprised by Griffin.
“These look awesome, and I can’t wait to run!” 10-year-old Izzy Turkington's words after @Shaquemgriffin surprised him with a #TeamCAF grant for a pair of @OssurCorp running prosthetics at @Nike Global Headquarters this morning! #LifeWithoutLimitations #JustDoIt pic.twitter.com/jzzQptalWQ— CAF (@CAFoundation) May 4, 2019
The two met at the fifth annual Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) Adaptive Sports Clinics at the Nike Global Headquarters in Beaverton.
Griffin, who was selected by the Seahawks in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft, has become a symbol for a number of challenged athletes. He was born with amniotic band syndrome, a rare condition that occurs during fetal development, and later had his left hand amputated due to significant pain.
Despite his disability, the 23-year-old did not let having one hand keep him from becoming a star at the University of Central Florida and eventually the first one-handed player drafted in the modern NFL.
Griffin understands the challenges those like Izzy will face and he's showing them that determination and grit can conquer any supposed obstacles.
“Just be great,” Griffin told Izzy. “It’s your dream. If it’s not crazy enough, then he's not dreaming big enough. I’m telling you, you're going to do great things and I’m going to be watching.”