Filipino-American motivational speaker Jessica Cox was recently honored by Women of Inspiration on behalf of Shane's Inspiration, an international project that helps build playgrounds and programs for children with disabilities. She herself was born differently-abled and without arms.
"I remember being a child in elementary school being frustrated at times because I felt at time the playground didn't include me. It wasn't always so friendly to someone without arms. And I know how that made me a little upset and angry," she said in an interview with Balitang America.
This, however, is just one of the many awards and recognitions given to Cox.
She is the first woman and only licensed pilot with no arms, a feat worth of a Guinness World Record. She gained her pilot's license on October 10, 2008 and prior to this, she had a fear of flying.
"It's even hard for me when I'm talking about it. You just do it," said Cox in an Inside Edition interview when asked how she can fly a plane with no hands. She flies a 1946 415C Ercoupe Airplane.
Jessica currently holds the rank of Second Degree Black Belt and Trainee Instructor in Taekwondo. She earned her first black belt in the International Taekwondo Federation at the age of 14 and her second black belt in the American Taekwondo Association while in college. She became the first armless person to earn an ATA black belt.
Born in 1983 in Sierra Vista, Arizona, Jessica has learned to live her life using her feet as others use their hands. She attended the University of Arizona where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology.
She recently came out with an inspirational book titled "Disarm your Limits" while her documentary "Right Footed" is set to debut in the Philippines this August.
With all the things she can do through the help of families, friends, and a lot of belief in oneself, Jessica shares her story with people around the world. With the slogan Think outside the shoe™, she encourages people to be creative, innovative, and adaptable to whatever life serves them.
(Video from Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America News Bureau; all photos from www.rightfooted.com.)