Richie Parker is your typical southern gentleman. He was born and raised in Beaufort, South Carolina to loving parents. He grew up with an eye for cars. He decided that was what he wanted to do when he grew up. He got his first car when he was 15, a 1964 Chevy Impala, which he has completely restored. He still drives it. He went on to Clemson University and majored in bio-mechanical engineering. After college, he took an internship at Hendricks Motor Sports, one of the most prestigious car racing companies in America. That internship turned into a full-time job. Richie now has been there eight years. He currently works as a vehicle engineer designing chassis and body components for all four of the organization’s race teams. Not bad for a kid from South Carolina, right? Now, what if I told you he did all this without any arms?
That’s right. Richie was born with a non-genetic birth defect called bilateral amelia that left him without arms. I see stories like Richie’s every now and then and I am in awe. I have trouble getting out of bed some mornings and here this guy is, living his dream, not letting the absence of arms distract him from living life on his own terms.
Could you do that? It takes quite a bit of fortitude to be able to accomplish these feats. I honestly don’t know if I could.
Welding the bottom of a truck? No problem. God bless you, Richie.