Ordinary Bike, Extraordinary Girl

August 23, 2017 07:24 PM

Five-year-old R.E. Pranke was born with bilateral phocomelia, meaning she was born without arms.  She was offered prosthetic arms, but said she didn't need them.

"I wanted to be like other kids," R.E. said.

But she did have one request for some specialists at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare:  She wanted to learn how to ride an ordinary bike.

Using P-V-C pipes and braces, they were able to invent a one-of-a-kind device that attaches to R.E.'s back and the handle bars of her bike.  She can steer by using her shoulders.

She says it feels like flying.

"The best part is peddling.  It feels like the wheels are moving super fast," she said.

"Just the freedom... I mean you should hear her giggle when she is able to do it," her mother, Karlyn Pranke, said.

R.E. also starts kindergarten next week.  Her mom says she will use her feet and her shoulders for her school work.

"I want people to know that just because she was born without arms, she can do the same things as everyone else," her mom said.



Ellen Galles

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