Child on play equipment with a prosthetic leg

Ollie takes it in his stride

Ollie doesn't let his prosthetic leg stop him from doing martial arts, playing golf and jumping off things.

Ollie Wedding’s family is yet to come across a challenge the Curlewis seven-year-old won’t tackle.

Living with a prosthetic limb, the year 2 student does martial arts, dabbles in golf and loves jumping off things.

Ollie was born with the rare condition fibular hemimelia, which he was diagnosed with in utero.

He was born with a right leg that was missing its ­fibula, had only two toes and an ankle structure that was not fully formed.

The lower part of that leg was amputated when he was 18 months old at The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH), and Ollie has grown up using prosthetics.

He continues to visit the RCH to have new prostheses measured.

Ollie and mum Meg

Mum Meg said he received two new prostheses, one for daily life and another for running, twice a year.

“He’s growing very, very quickly,” Mrs Wedding said.

Ollie also goes to a specialist clinic at the RCH annually to monitor his growth and progress and is on the waiting list for corrective surgery to rectify the way his right leg is growing.

Mrs Wedding said Ollie was “very casual” about his differences.

“Ollie knows his leg didn’t grow properly when he was in my tummy,” she said.

“He often is asked about it and just says ‘that’s the way I’m born’.”

The aspiring YouTuberis a constant source of inspiration to his family.

“We haven’t come across anything yet he can’t do,” Mrs Wedding said.

“We never imagined he would be quite as active as what he is.”

Ollie gets things done “with or without” his leg, often choosing to perform martial arts without even using his prosthesis.

Mrs Wedding said her family was so grateful for the support the RCH had given Ollie and the family as his needs changed and grew.

Ollie’s 2019 campaign photo

“We’ve always been impressed it’s so inclusive of all aspects of his life,” she said.

“For us having that support from all angles has been really important for his growth.” 

Ollie was the face of the Good Friday Appeal in 2019 and Mrs Wedding said the campaign had been amazing to be a part of.

She urged people to dig deep to support the hospital if they were able to.

Since 1931, the Good Friday Appeal has been dedicated to fundraising for the RCH so that it can continue to provide world class care for kids.

Originally published in the Geelong Advertiser, Friday, 14 April 2022
Words: Tamara McDonald
Images: Mark Wilson

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