KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. - A young athlete has defeated some incredible odds and is serving as an inspiration to others.
Tyler Burt,20, is quite a force to be reckoned with on the squash court, but he had to overcome obstables to get where he is today. Burt suffered a stroke in utero. "Right before I was born one singular blood vessel collapsed in the left cerebral cortex of my brain," he told FOX 29. "Doctors didn't discover it until he was 6 months old."
The brain injury affected feeling and dexterity on his right side. At the age of 4, he underwent intense therapy at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
"Basically, what they did was cast my left arm so I had to do everything with my right arm, so it really helped strengthen the muscles," he explained.
The young boy loved sports. His dad coached his lacrosse team when he was younger, but he came to realize he couldn't play like the other kids who had use of both hands.
"I used to be very down about myself about this. I used to think I was less than a person," Burt said.
That's when his mom suggested trying squash, which is a one-handed sport. Burt plays with a pretty big ankle brace but it's something he can do and do well.
Paul Frank has been training him since he was 11 years old.
"He's a young man with a lot of character and a lot of heart," he said.
Burt was recruited to play squash for Colby College in Maine. He played his first match last winter and achieved his lifelong dream of becoming a division one athlete.
He hopes to be an inspiration to others. This impressive young man about to publish a book about the first 20 years of his life in conjunction with Colby College.
"I faced my fair share of bullying. People taunting me for walking different or looking weird. I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy, so it's given me a new perspective on life," Burt said.
His message is simple, "Look at me, you know like, if I can do it, you can do it. You just gotta show up that's half the battle."