Paralympian Medalist Prepares In Fort Smith For World Championship

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FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- The top Paralympic sprinter in the world was in Fort Smith Monday (Aug. 31).

Jerome Singleton worked with Francois Van Der Watt with Total Rehabilitation, Inc. to make sure his prosthetic leg is in perfect condition.

"I had tibiahememelia, so my tibia didn`t grow all the way and I didn`t have an inner ankle bone," said Singleton, who was born with the birth defect.  "So they amputated my leg when I was one and a half. I kind of consider it the best decision I never made."

Following that decision he won countless titles.

“I guess the thing I’m known for is winning the 100 meter world championship in 2011 where I beat my rival at the time Oscar Pistorius,” Singleton said. “He hadn`t lost a race in seven years.”

Singleton lives in Boston, but said the trip to Fort Smith is well worth it.

“We make sure everything is still in place and alignment is where we need it to be,” Van Der Watt said.

Van Der Watt said they are getting ready for the world championship in October and the legs don't run cheap.

“It`s about to the $20,000 if you have to pay out of pocket for it,” Van Der Watt said. “Unfortunately insurance companies do not cover any sports prosthetics. It`s a challenge for athletes to be competing at that level and have the necessary means to buy their equipment.”

“Live your life like a story, if someone reads it they will know it`s possible,” Singleton said.

The two are heading to a training camp this weekend in California.

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