6 days ago
Crossing the finish line at the 2018 Eugene Half Marathon in Eugene, Oregon, in April, runner Justin Gallegos notched a major victory.
But Gallegos achieved another, even bigger milestone this week: On a number of social media channels including his own, it was announced Gallegos, a student at the University of Oregon, has signed a professional contract with Nike.
What makes that especially noteworthy is that Gallegos has cerebral palsy.
By inking the contract, Gallegos is now the first Nike-sponsored athlete with the condition.
View this post on Instagram
I’m still at loss for words! Thank to everyone for the love and the support not only the past couple days but the last seven years of my life! Beyond blessed to officially represent the swoosh! Still can’t believe I made Nike history! Very excited! Big things are yet to come! Trust in the process! And trust in God! All glory to the most high! God is truly good! #NikeRunning #NIKE #SWOOSH #SwooshFamily #Beaverton #Nike72 #JustDoIt #ThereIsNoFinishLine #StrongerEveryMile #NoSuchThingAsADisability #Limitless #Breaking2
Gallegos who used a walker to assist him until he was in kindergarten, runs in a pair of custom-made Nike running shoes and can clock a just-above-seven-minute mile.
“You don’t realize how realistic and emotional your dreams are until they play out before your very eyes,” wrote in an Instagram post announcing the deal. “Signing this contract was a huge success for me and I would not have made it without my friends and family and teammates! This was perhaps the most emotional moment in my seven years of running! Growing up with a disability, the thought of becoming a professional athlete is as I have said before like the thought of climbing Mt. Everest! It is definitely possible, but the odds are most definitely not in your favor! Hard work pays off! Hundreds of miles, blood, sweat, and tears has led me here along with a few permanent scars! But the journey is damn sure not over!!”
Here’s a video that pieces together what happened when Gallegos found out about the contract on Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day.Read the full story at Running Magazine