An amputee Comrades runner on crutches is inspiring South Africans with his strength and determination after being photographed during the marathon.
Amputee runner, Xolani Luvuno is pursuing his dream to complete the 2018 Comrades Marathon on crutches today, and inspiring millions while doing it.
The determined athlete is doing the gruelling 90km race on crutches, after refusing to give up on his dream when his running blade let him down.
Luvuno was given five extra hours to complete the race.
“It’s not a competition for me. I want to make sure I finish in time. It’s all about the experience,” Luvuno said.
South Africans got to know Luvuno in May last year after renowned South African and advocate for change, Yusuf Abramjee, spotted the runner and stopped to speak to him to find out why he was running with crutches.
“I’ve just spotted this runner in Centurion – he has bone marrow cancer. I salute his courage & will power.”
“The man running with him was Hein Venter.”
“Hein tells me he picked-up Xolani near a bridge in Irene a year ago. He was homeless and addicted to Nyope. Hein got him off drugs and gave him a job at his perfume company… and finally got him into running.”
“Xolani lost his leg some 7/8 years ago because of bone marrow cancer.”
The incredible athlete completed the race on crutches just before 4.30pm.
Luvuno had this to say at the finish line: “I wanted to make sure that I finish before cut-off time and my coach said to me don’t rush because the Comrades Marathon is not 42km, it’s a big race. I want to say thank you to the supporters who cheered for me on the routes as well as the director of the Comrades Marathon for giving me this chance.”
Luvuno was being supported along the route by many of his followers who are cheering him on and loads of pics of him in action were circulating online:
— 𝔈𝔴𝔞𝔫 🇿🇦 (@ewanm) June 10, 2018
— Mbaliyezwe Ndlela (@mbali_ndlela) June 10, 2018