“My name is Calder Hodge. I am 13 years old, and I was born with no tibia bones in my legs.”
Calder lives in Magnolia, Texas – a small town outside Houston.
“Most kids put their shoes on one foot at a time. I put my legs on one leg at a time.”
When he was two-and-a-half, both his legs were amputated above the knee. He’s worn prosthetics ever since.
(Photo from Calder Hodge)
And yes, his dream is to play quarterback for the Houston Texans one day. In fact, Calder does play quarterback today. (He’s #9 in that picture.)
“I’ve had it in my blood for all my life. My dad and my grandpa, they were quarterbacks.”
But in Calder’s case, that dream comes a little harder.
“With being an above knee amputee, it means that my prosthetics have to have knees in them for me to have flexibility or bending. I have two types of prosthetics…my walking knee/feet and my sports running blades.”
Those prosthetics make his dream possible. But to make those prosthetics possible, you have to start with petrochemicals.
The advanced carbon fiber materials that make prosthetic legs strong, flexible, lightweight, durable – in short, an athlete’s legs – that takes materials like polyacrylonitrile, which come from a basic petrochemical, propylene. The fibers are laid in a matrix using epoxy resins, for which propylene is also the key petrochemical. From fibers to resins, propylene is a versatile and essential building block for advanced prosthetics.
A mouthful, yes – but for Calder Hodge, maybe also the stuff that dreams are made of.
(If you’d like to help that dream come true, Calder Hodge has a GoFundMe page.)
And of course, you want to see Calder Hodge in action, right? So here he is…
(Video from KRPC 2 Houston)