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Amputee Marlon Shirley Is Among the Fastest Men in the World

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    Amputee Marlon Shirley Is Among the Fastest Men in the World

    Marlon Shirley is one of the fastest people in the world, even though he has a prosthetic foot.

    "It's something I train for every single day. It's almost just like an automatic movement of my body springing down the track," he said.

    Shirley is competing this weekend in the Paralympic Games in Athens, Greece. The games' official motto is "focus on the athlete and not on the disability," and Shirley, 26, is chasing five gold medals.

    "We all have our own type of disabilities," he said. "Mine just happens to be physical, and you can see it very easily when I run. But you can't tell it by the time I get done racing."

    He won a gold medal at the Paralympic Games in Australia four years ago.

    "I couldn't remember much of it all. I just remember starting, and I just remember having my arms up at the end," he said.

    Shirley is an extraordinary athlete. He hold the long jump record for disabled athletes, and he was the first amputee to run the 100-meter dash in under 11 seconds - only two seconds less than the world record for men who have both their legs.

    Shirley's prosthetic foot is made of carbon fiber titanium, materials developed in the aerospace industry. He is clearly testing the limits of what a prosthetic foot can do.

    "The feet? They've lasted me forever," he said. full article