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  • Aug 22nd 2013 at 12:30PM
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This is Richie Parker. He's a number of things: car enthusiast, engineer, employee, son. He's a normal guy for his age, working a job in a field he loves. Oh, he also happens to have no arms. After watching this video from ESPN, we can't help but think that Richie might describe himself in just such a way, with his birth defect a secondary part of his life, scarcely worth mentioning. His story is a remarkable one, about not letting bumps in the road stop you and about finding ingenious solutions to problems you or I have never thought about.

Richie was born with bilateral amelia, a non-genetic birth defect in which limbs aren't formed. While the idea of not having any arms might be terrifying to many, as shown in the video, having dealt with it since birth has lead Richie to develop a number of interesting solutions. He can ride a bike, open the fridge and microwave on his own, use a computer and drive a car with his feet – virtually everything we can do (and take for granted) Richie can do with a bit of determination and creativity. Not surprisingly, finding those interesting solutions to everyday problems teamed with his love of cars led to a job at one of the finest NASCAR teams in the country. Take a look at the full video from ESPN, embedded below.

After that, perhaps you'd be interested in hearing a bit about some more people who have managed to overcome similar issues in equally impressive ways.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 1 Year Ago
      Necessity is the mother of invention. Having to make every move in life with invention, this guy is probably one heck of an engineer.
        • 1 Year Ago
        You are definitely right. There is no way this guy is anything short of an amazing Engineer. That organization wouldn\'t keep him around and Rex Stump is a brilliant guy. Look at what he did in his career. I bet he has amazing expectations for this young man.
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is a story about the triumph of the human spirit, and that those of us who have "gasoline in our blood" are more alike than we are different. This man has overcome adversity and has followed his dreams, it makes me a little ashamed for allowing minor (in comparison) obstacles deter me from following mine. Kudos to Richie.! I declare that anyone who can post negative thoughts about this video says a lot more about their self-loathing than anything else.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Awesome story. His parents taught him that he can solve any problem and that nothing is an obstacle. And solve he did. Imagine having to think outside the box for every task possible. Add in great parents and an incredible personal spiirt and this kid hasn't looked back.
        • 1 Year Ago
        Exactly. The key is the parents and his attitude. The parenting is missing today in many families.
      Hey Man!
      • 1 Year Ago
      FANTASTIC Story!!! Good for him, never gave up, so successful. Congratulations to such great parents and a good up bringing.
      • 1 Year Ago
      • 1 Year Ago
      this is awesome. outstanding people like Richie must be praise for their contribution of making a better world. loved to see this movie and really i'm amazed of the sensation he gaved me. i feel ashamed for all my excuses. also being a father gives me example on how to grow up my little boy. thanks for sharing this. have a good life.
      • 1 Year Ago
      I loved every bit of it
      • 1 Year Ago
      Also awesome that he loves cars.
      • 1 Year Ago
      I went to college with this guy. Seems like he could find a way to do anything. I remember walking by and seeing him in a fly fishing class. That's some pretty incredible stuff.
      Warren Jenny
      • 1 Year Ago
      Richie, I was sent the link to your video from the President of our Classic Chevy Car club. It is a club for "Tri Five" Chevy lovers. 1955 thru 1957, car/trucks. I want you to know that you are an inspiration to anyone with a disability. You are amazing & makes me proud just to be able to tell you so. I am a huge Hendrick Motor Sports fan. I like the 88 car/driver the best. Dale is another fine example of someone close to your age, that has had problems in his life that he ignored & made a name for himself. Thanks go out to your parents as well for raising you correctly. Your attitude made it work though. Without the right attitude, nothing will be easy. Thanks for being who you are & thanks for making my day. I am 69 years old & have 4 children, all successful like you. Please keep up the good work & I will keep you in my heart every time I watch NASCAR.
      Rob S
      • 1 Year Ago
      Rob S miketim1, I'm glad you recognize Richie as a role model for ALL of HUMANITY, I'm not too sure why you brought up the race card? He's an American and if anything he has proven that NOBODY, black, white, yellow, red or green, has an EXCUSE for NOT working. NOBODY! He has proven that because of HIS WONDERFUL PARENTS and their VALUES that there is NOTHING that can't be overcome. I wish it was mandatory for EVERY person in America to take a few lessons from Richie and his beautiful FAMILY. God bless him and his family. I'm so inspired by Richie, I've heard about him from within my with in my circle of friends and watching his story has made me be more determined to overcome my disabilities than I already was before I heard about him. I refuse to let my disabilities stop me and my color has nothing to do with my success and he's made it abundantly clear that his color has not slowed him down either. I'd have to say that if anything, people that complain they can't find work that this should make them rethink their position in life and QUIT making excuses for not being accountable for their own life. Richie Parker should be the poster boy for the US Government, No MORE hand OUT's, instead MORE hands UP and institute programs to get EVERYBODY regardless of COLOR working with NO excuses. I'd personally like to thank Richie for being who he is, He's a beautiful human being and he's absolutely a positive role model for every single person in this country and around the entire WORLD for that matter and the color of your skin has NOTHING to do with Richie's wonderful story. I'd love to meet this man some day.... he is my HERO!!! I'm an engine designer in a different industry but I know the level of thinking Richie needs to work at and he's an amazing person at any level. Thank you Richie for being who you are..... You are what the American dream is all about, simply put you are the American Dream. Thank You Richie Parker!
      • 1 Year Ago
      Inspiring. I am going to show this to my two lazybutt kids... who have their arms. Thanks for posting this story!
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