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Todd Key, Cyclist With One Leg From Scottsdale, Arizona, Continues To Inspire With His Speed And Persistence

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With his extraordinary drive and persistence, a one-legged cyclist is showing the world that even the most debilitating of adversities can be overcome, CNN reports.

When Todd Key was 7, he lost the use of his right hand after a bad fall caused a fracture and then an infection, leaving it misshapen.

Then, at the age of 17, tragedy struck again when he was forced to have his right leg amputated because of muscle cancer in his knee, AZCentral.com reports.

Though the Scottsdale, Ariz., resident admitted to CNN that it took many years of "frustration and confusion to put things together," 50-year-old Key says that he refused to give up.

In 2009, Key -- whose cancer has been in remission now for 33 years -- got back on a bicycle for the first time in decades. According to a note on the Tour de Scottsdale website, Key had initially only intended to ride the bike to the movies.

Before long, however, he was biking the 12 miles to work -- and loving every minute of it. Unfortunately, as Key started riding longer distances, the pain from taking all the pressure on his left side became debilitating.

Undeterred, he approached Airpark Bikes, a custom bicycle shop in Scottsdale.

With the help of manager Jason Suarez, Key modified the bike for his own use -- adding a special seat and handlebars, as well as a prosthetic socket for an amputated leg.

"We've developed a very simple, yet slightly complex system, that is easy to put together, will work on any bike and can benefit every amputee," he told AZCentral.com, adding that the system now allows him to ride up to 100 miles at a time, pain-free.

Key said his long-term goal is to make this system -- and the exhilarating sense of freedom it affords -- available to amputees who are interested in riding bicycles.

"I'm at a point in my life when I have found a certain amount of fulfillment and with this happiness, it's time for me to focus on what I can do to benefit others," he said.

After riding in his first bicycle tour in 2010, Key was asked to co-headline the 2011 8th Annual Tour de Scottsdale with his brother Scott.

At the tour -- which took place last October and benefits the non-profit organization McDowell Sonoran Conservancy -- Key covered the 70 miles in 3 hours and 9 minutes, just 30 minutes shy of the able-bodied champion.

The photo of Todd Key was taken from his Facebook page, where other photos of the cyclist can be found.

Around the Web

Todd Key | Facebook

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