Bartlett teen says newspaper helped make her dream a reality

  • Bartlett High School graduate Tiffany Wallace, 18, received her new athletic prosthetic leg in March and is making strides with it in college.

    Bartlett High School graduate Tiffany Wallace, 18, received her new athletic prosthetic leg in March and is making strides with it in college. Courtesy of Tiffany Wallace

 
 
Posted10/4/2015 6:12 AM

Sporting a new prosthetic leg, Tiffany Wallace is getting her stride at Illinois State University in Normal where she is a freshman studying nursing and pursuing sports this fall.

"It's been exciting," said the 18-year-old Bartlett High School graduate who was born with a right leg that never fully formed below the knee -- a condition known as amniotic band syndrome.

 

Tiffany has had multiple prostheses since she was 11 months old. Yet, it didn't stop her from learning ballet in elementary school, playing basketball in middle school and badminton in high school.

She collected more than $20,000 in one month through an online campaign for a custom-built athletic prosthesis so she could continue participating in athletics in college.

Friends, family members and Tiffany's youth group at Willow Creek Church in South Barrington used social media to spread the word, resulting in a flurry of donations.

Wallace said she never would have realized her dream were it not for all the support.

"The newspaper definitely had a big part in getting my story out," said Tiffany, who got her athletic prosthetic leg in March.

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"I can put as much as I want out there, but having it in a trustworthy place, where people can see it and read it, and know that it's coming from a news source ... it made it explode throughout the communities," she said. "My family got super excited about seeing it and loved sharing it. A lot of people saw it because of that. It truly did help me.

"I don't think I would have raised that much money without (the Daily Herald's) help."

Today, she participates in badminton open gyms and is contemplating how to balance her college courses, clubs and competing.

She is excited about her future possibilities and that "so many doors that have opened for me because of this."

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