Jemma in atrium

Aug 25, 2021 / Prosthetics & Orthotics

Share Your Story: Jemma the Firecracker

Meet Jemma, a patient seen by our multidisciplinary team of experts. Learn more about her journey below.

Blog written by Jemma's mom, Tamara.   

Jemma was born with two different orthopedic conditions — tibial hemimelia and ectrodactyly — which means she is missing the tibia bone in her right leg and also missing some fingers. But these conditions do not define her! Jemma visits Scottish Rite for Children and has been a patient of Dr. Herring’s her entire life. When she was 9 months old, we decided that amputation of her right leg above the knee would give her the best chance for an active life. Her surgeries were tough, but so is she. 
Jemma has moved past the surgeries she had as a baby and is doing amazing things in her little life. You name it, and ‘Jemma the Firecracker’ can do it. She is so full of life that she literally radiates. She loves sports and competes in swimming and track & field events at the Angel City Games in Los Angeles, California and the Endeavor Games in Edmond, Oklahoma. Her true sporting passion is softball, and she is not afraid of hard work! She shows everyone that it is important to always chase your dreams.
If I am ever having a hard day, she will remind me, “life is full of ups and downs, and it’s the ups that bring us into the next day!” I look at her, and I sometimes cannot believe that all of this wisdom and maturity is coming out of a 9-year-old girl. I know that whatever she chooses to do in life, she will rock this world!
None of this would have been possible without Scottish Rite for Children. Every single person there supports us, and Jemma loves her entire care team. The Orthotics & Prosthetics department has truly given her life. She would not be nearly as active or as vibrant as she is without her amazing legs. Her custom-made prostheses are just an extension of her personality.

The design on her legs show you who she is and who she will become.

Jemma hopes to one day compete in the Paralympic Games or even play professional softball. We are grateful for Scottish Rite and know whatever Jemma decides to do, her care team will have her back!

Watch more of Jemma's story. 



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