Austin, age 18, of Leonard, Texas, has been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children since he was born. He was born with numerous challenges and underwent several surgeries on his hands and feet after birth, causing both of his feet to be amputated at a young age. He considers the hospital his second home, since he continues to require one to two surgeries per year. Despite his challenges, Austin always remains positive, upbeat and a constant encouragement to his entire community. Austin serves on student government and plays trumpet at Leonard High School. This will be Austin’s second time going on the Amputee Ski Trip and he is excited to spend time with the friends he made from the trip last year, as well as meet new friends this year.
About TSRHC’s Amputee Ski Trip:
Since 1981, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children has hosted an Annual Amputee Ski Trip for patients. Fourteen teenage patients, as well as medical staff and chaperones, spend a week at the National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD), in Winter Park, Colorado.
In a continuing effort to improve the lives of patients, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children recognized that snow skiing is well suited for amputees, and with special equipment, they quickly become competitive and often excel at the sport.
Skiing at the renowned National Sports Center for the Disabled creates a focus for the trip, but the personal growth and challenges the teens overcome are often more life-changing than the actual accomplishment of skiing. The goal of the trip is to foster a sense of self-confidence, discovery and independence for these teens.
Since the first Amputee Ski Trip in 1981, the community has teamed up with the hospital to make this opportunity possible to patient families. American Airlines has sponsored the trip since 2005. Prior to that, Delta Airlines supported the event for more than 20 years. Multiple supporters include the Lone Star Skier’s Club of Dallas, Smith Group Asset Management, The Women’s Charity League of Park Cities, TSRHC volunteers and many others.