Paralyzed man’s quest to walk Cooper River Bridge Run turning into reality with exoskeleton

Updated: Dec. 31, 2015 at 12:35 AM EST
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CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - On the 10th anniversary of the car accident that paralyzed him, Adam Gorlitsky received a robotic ReWalk exoskeleton he hopes will allow him to walk this year's Cooper River Bridge Run.

ReWalk Robotics Ltd., a global exoskeleton developer and manufacturer, delivered a personal exoskeleton system to Adam at the Roper Rehabilitation Hospital Wednesday.

The 29-year-old will be the first recipient of a ReWalk Personal system in the state.

The personal exoskeleton system will take Adam closer to his goal of being the first paralyzed man to walk in the Cooper River Bridge Run on April 2.

He hopes his walking will "Bridge the Gap" and raise awareness for what it means to be disabled and able-bodied.

Adam fell asleep while driving Dec. 30, 2005, which led to a car accident that left him with a spinal cord injury, permanently paralyzing him from the waist down.

At the time, he was told he would never walk again.

In 2015, Adam was introduced to the ReWalk exoskeleton at Roper Rehabilitation Hospital.

He's been training on the ReWalk for the past five months and will finalize his training with his own personal system.

Adam also set up a crowdfunding campaign on his website "I Got Legs" to pay for his ReWalk system.

The ReWalk exoskeleton will allow Adam to stand, walk and return to many activities he once did every day.

"For the past 10 years, I have been forced to accept the challenges and limitations that my injury would bring me," Adam said in a press release. "This has touched not only my life, but that of my family, friends and loved ones. That's why the ReWalk Robotics exoskeleton is so important to me and the rest of the spinal cord injury community. Words cannot describe how much I want to hug a girlfriend standing up, or just talk with someone at eye level. With ReWalk, I can do those things — things I never thought I ever would —again."

"We are so pleased to deliver a ReWalk system to Adam this week, and have him join the ranks of ReWalkers around the world," said ReWalk Robotics CEO Larry Jasinski, in a press release. "We are proud to work with dozens of rehabilitation hospitals across the country like Roper Rehabilitation Hospital, which help expose the spinal cord injured community to this technology, and provide training so that eligible ReWalkers can have the chance to stand and walk again."

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