Former paralympian, Lloyd Bachrach, provided the final presentation during the second annual Empowering disABILITIES Resource Expo on Saturday, October 18 at Sauk Valley Community College. Bachrach, who was born with a bone deficiency that left his legs unusually short shared an inspirational message that made it very clear to that audience that if they wanted to succeed, they’d have to be able to overcome challenges.
“I want to get it straight, from the beginning, that this program is not about what you have,” he said. “And it’s not about what you don’t have. But it’s how you use what you have.”
Bachrach also talked about the focus and commitment that led him to finishing fifth at the IHSA state gymnastics meet as a high school senior in 1980 and for the United States in sitting volleyball during the 1996 Paralympic Games in Atlanta.
Despite the fact that Bachrach has to use artificial legs to stand 5’8, he does not like the term disabled. He doesn’t think it’s accurate. According to him, he is differently abled, because everyone has different abilities, and his are just different due to his circumstances.
“I know that we have the ability to be anyone we choose to be, as long as we want it badly enough,” he said. “So today’s program, I call it ‘Yes You Can’ or ‘Overcoming Adversity to Succeed.’ Because I believe you can achieve anything. You can do anything in life if you put your mind to it. The only thing that limits you is you.”
Bachrach currently tours the country as a highly sought after motivational speaker.
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Watch Lloyd Bachrach Speaking to Students to Believe in Themselves: