Runner Justin Gallegos becomes Nike’s first athlete with cerebral palsy
One major aspect of the human condition is to fight against the odds and defy limitations. For Oregon runner Justin Gallegos, defying the odds is the norm.
Gallegos, a member of Oregon’s running club, has cerebral palsy and has spent his life fighting past his condition to push boundaries and achieve his dreams. Now, he’s become the first person with cerebral palsy to sign a professional contract with Nike.
The University of Oregon running group was joined by Nike insight director John Douglass to present him with his endorsement deal. Aided by a filming crew from Pacific Northwest production company Elevation 0m, Nike filmed the process to share Gallegos’ story with a wider audience.
This event coincided with World Cerebral Palsy Day on Saturday, Oct. 6. Not only was this a great way to spread awareness about the disorder, but it afforded Gallegos the opportunity of a lifetime.
Gallegos’s heartwarming response to the deal is what caught the attention of more than 141,000 Twitter users that liked the video posted by Sports Illustrated. This video not only told a small portion of Gallegos’ story, but it also caught the whirlwind of emotion that overwhelmed him in the moment.
Gallegos posted the video on his own Instagram account, where he described his experience and story on World Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day.
“You don’t realize how realistic and emotional your dreams are until they play out before your very eyes,” Gallegos said in his post.