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'Breaking Bad' Actor Leads Minneapolis March for Shriners Hospitals

Updated: 07/05/2014 7:10 PM
Created: 07/05/2014 12:41 PM KSTP.com
By: Kate Renner

A stroll along Loring Park on Saturday morning was a powerful example of hope and determination.

Hundreds of people took part in the first ever "Walk For Love" to raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children.

It may look like an ordinary fundraiser walk; except in this case, many of the participants were told they would never walk.

"My parents were told I probably would not walk when I was born," said Megan Wellner.

Wellner has club feet, but through surgery at Shriner's Hospital Twin Cities and years of physical therapy, she is one of the thousands of children who grew up putting her best foot first.

"I am a fortunate and very lucky case. I actually have ran three 5Ks, I participated in dance, softball and tennis in high school. And I believe not everyone is as lucky as I am, I have to take advantage of that," said Wellner.

A special celebrity lead the march who has faced his adversity head on.

RJ Mitte, an actor on the TV show "Breaking Bad," was given a negative prognosis by doctors at a young age. Like his character in the show, Mitte was diagnosed with mild cerebral palsy.

"You'll never be able to walk properly, you'll never be able to talk properly," Mitte said doctors told him.

And although his character, Walter Jr., needed braces to walk, RJ didn't let his cerebral palsy limit his mobility. 

"We both went through the same treatment, we both went through the casting and the braces," said Mitte.

"I guarantee you I wouldn't be who I am today or have the abilities that I have today without Shriners," said Mitte.

Mitte was introduced to Shriners as a young boy. A car dealer and fellow Shriners patient, told his grandma he had cerebral palsy when doctors were stumped.

"The first day I went to Shriners was my turning point," said Mitte.

Mitte is among the thousands of children who are given top-quality care through a Shriner's hospital, no matter a patient's ability to pay for medical attention.

Mitte embraces his disability not as an obstacle, but as the source of what makes him great.

"What they have or what they think makes them different, makes them unique, and makes them stronger, said Mitte.


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