October 10, 2014

Friends Pitch In For Indy Man's High-Tech Legs

Friends Pitch In For Indy Man's High-Tech Legs

A life changing car accident nine years ago left Indianapolis’ Jeremy Warriner a double amputee. Warriner’s friends are helping him fundraise for his third set of prosthetic legs that carry a combined price tag of over $100,000.

Jeremy Warriner was fitted with his new robotic knees Wednesday.

“And I have to learn to get it to do what it’s supposed to do here… there we go…”

The learning curve for the new legs pales in comparison to what Warriner lived through in 2005. He was in a fiery crash on his way home for work and didn’t wake up from a drug induced coma for six weeks.

“Emotionally, when I learned that my legs were gone, honestly, I had no intention of living,” Warriner said.

But hearing the stories of the people that happened upon his accident and risked their lives to pull him from his burning Jeep gave him the inspiration to live.

“I realized that I had been given a gift that night – the gift of life – and I could not throw that gift away,” he said.

Eleven weeks after the accident, Jeremy went home and set a goal for himself.

“So I started making the decision everyday that I was going to be happy at the end of the day no matter what challenges came my way," Warriner said. "Eventually, that decision became a real happiness and now I live a fully independent lifestyle.”

Once a hotel manager, turned motivational speaker – he now has a new job of fundraiser. His insurance gave him approval to move ahead with the robotic knee purchase – but they won’t cover everything.

“I am trying to raise $47,000 – thinking that the cost is going to come in around $110,000, Warriner said. "In fact, yesterday I had to sign the piece of paper saying that if insurance did not cover anything – or whatever they didn’t cover – that I would be responsible for the rest.”

Warriner has a crowd sourced “Go Fund Me” campaign called Jeremy Warriner 3.0 - because this is his third set of prosthetic legs. His friends have organized a concert with a variety of music featuring celtic, jazz, and several local artists this Sunday at North United Methodist Church from 4 to 6 p.m.

Warriner will be there – new legs and all – after a little more practice. As one of the legs beeped, Warriner smiled and said, "Yeah, there’s a lot I still need to learn."

The eclectic concert event, called Leg A Palooza, is free and open to the public.

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