garrisonhayes








Facebook YouTube

-


Cancer survivor, leg amputee

In February 2005, Garrison began to experience tenderness in his left knee. Garrison braved the pain and compensated by favoring his right leg. When his mother noticed him hopping around the house, she inquired about the new development and examined him closely. Although there was no discoloration or swelling, his left knee was very tender to the touch. Kori sought medical attention immediately.

With no clear sign of trauma, Garrison’s pediatrician ordered an x-ray of his left leg, revealing a growth on Garrison’s knee. Garrison had cancer, specifically, Osteosarcoma, a cancerous bone tumor.

Unfortunately, all of the treatment options available for Garrison included a form of amputation. Among the three possible surgeries, one stood out as the right choice for Garrison: the Van Ness Rotationplasty. This was a new alternative to conventional leg amputation, and it promised Garrison the best quality of life. In May 2005, Garrison underwent the Van Ness procedure. Through innovation and expert care, Garrison has a second chance at life.

With that second chance, you will not find Garrison sitting still. Garrison is an Eagle Scout.  He is very active and he loves to play all sports. Garrison participates in soccer, basketball, track and field, alpine skiing, sled hockey, cycling, mountain bike racing and mountaineering.

He is an international competitor in track and field. He has competed in Puerto Rico, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, where he has earned thirteen medals and has been named the IWAS World Junior Champion in the Shot Put, Javelin and Discus throws.  He is a sixteen-time US Paralympics Track & Field High School All-American and he was honored as the 2015 Male Field Athlete of the Year. He holds the National Record in the Javelin in his disability class. 

If Garrison is not on the track, he is probably out on the trails racing mountain bikes. He was a member of the Cherry Creek Composite Team and the Highlands Ranch Composite Team. Garrison was honored to receive the National Interscholastic Cycling Association Sho-Air Extraordinary Courage Award and the Colorado High School Cycling League Trailblazer Award and 2016 Exceptional Student Athlete Award. He is in the US Paralympics Cycling athlete development program.

Garrison’s cancer is now in remission. He still visits The Children’s Hospital regularly to meet with other children who are facing the difficult battles with cancer and amputation. He offers his perspective and encouragement, using his experience as an asset by sharing his story of overcoming obstacles, along with showing them his surgery and how it works.  In 2008, he served as the Colorado Champion Child for Children’s Miracle Network, and in 2013, he served as an Ambassador for Children's Hospital Colorado. 

The John Lynch Foundation recognized Garrison for his commitment to excellence in academics, community involvement and athletics by naming him a 2013 Exceptional Star of the Year Award winner and scholarship recipient and named him as a finalist for the 2017 Lynch Family Legacy Scholarship.

The Colorado Sports Hall of Fame has selected Garrison to receive the 2014 Athlete with a Disability Recognition Award for his outstanding athletic performances.

Garrison was recently selected as a 2017 Daniels Scholar. The Daniels Scholarship Program provides a four-year annually-renewable college scholarship for graduating high school seniors who demonstrate exceptional character, leadership, and a commitment to serving their communities.

At a glance, Garrison is an ordinary teen, but with a closer look you’ll find an extraordinary spirit and a true Champion.

You can contact Garrison at watty9305@gmail.com.

.