Nation’s Top Amateur Athlete is a Lower Leg Amputee

And what determination and perserverance can do for you. Amy Palmiero-Winters, the 37 year old mother, singer and accomplished runner just received the 2009 AAU Sullivan Award for being the best amateur athlete in the country.

The 1997 freaky motorcycle accident led to 27 surgeries and eventually amputating her left leg below the knee. She was unfazed by her predicament as she became a single-leg below-the-knee amputee world record holder in over a dozen events, including the marathon and Ironman distance triathlon.

Clad in a sexy white mini-dress to show off her prosthesis, Palmiero-Winters said “this means a lot. It shows that what I do and how hard I try actually is making a difference. The people who believe in you and stand by you help you do better things.”

As the first amputee to be ever named to the USA National Team, Palmiero-Winters just finished the “Race to the Future” event during New Year’s Eve, beating all able-bodied male and female runners. With 130.4 miles covered during the 24-hour race, she qualified for the national team at the 2010 International Association of Ultrarunners’ 24-hour Run World Championship to be held in France on May 13-14.

More images and videos of Palmiero-Winters accepting the award at the recently concluded 2009 AAU Sullivan Award at their site.

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