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Former Paralympian and current firefighter, Chris Cederstrand discusses what it means to “dream bigger”
Austin, TX, May 8th, 2020 - “Strength doesn’t come from what you can do, it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t” says Chris Cederstrand. Growing up in the Saskatchewan province in Canada, Chris was familiar with digging deep to find strength to get him through tough hockey games during his WHL days. It wasn’t until a life-saving surgery in 2004, which resulted in his leg amputation, that Chris realized how much strength he really had.
Chris graduated at the top of his class in Fire School and while awaiting interviews, he accepted a position in construction. On a normal day on the job, Chris was backing heavy machinery up a hill when the gears slipped and he began to roll down-hill. He ultimately had to make the decision to jump off the machinery as it started to flip and part of his leg was caught. After four years of trying to find his way forward, Chris slowly began to find himself again with the help of his strong support system of friends and family.
He taught himself how to skate and snowboard again and found his way back on the ice playing sledge hockey in 2011. After becoming captain, he also landed a spot as first alternative for the 2014 Sochi Paralympic sledge hockey team. That same year, he also welcomed a new baby to his family in addition to accepting a position as a firefighter.
Chris has come a long way since his accident in 2004 and now shares his story of strength and struggle to encourage others. Join us Friday, May 7th at 12:00 CDT when Ottbock will go live on Instagram with Chris to discuss his journey from the WHL, to the Paralympics and firefighting as an amputee.
If you are unable to attend the live event, you can find a recording post-event on Ottobock’s YouTube channel.
Ottobock develops “wearable human bionics” – medical technology products for people with limited mobility in the fields of Prosthetics, Orthotics and Human Mobility (wheelchairs). The company, founded in 1919, also treats patients in its Patient Care division. Ottobock's mission: Enhancing the quality of life and health economic benefits of those they serve. In 2018, Ottobock began using their biomechanical expertise for industrial applications as well with the introduction of the Paexo exoskeleton. Subsidiaries in 59 countries offer “Made in Germany” quality worldwide and employ more than 7,000 people. The international activities of the company are coordinated from the head office in Duderstadt, Germany. The company opened its doors in the U.S. in 1958 and in Canada in 1978. Ottobock has been supporting the Paralympic Games with technical expertise since 1988.