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  • Chris McMillan

Tibetan amputee moves forward, first with shoe partner, then with new limb

China Daily

15th December 2021

Tibetan amputee moves forward, first with shoe partner, then with new limb

Phuntsok Tsering, 32, once had a wild idea, "How wonderful it would be if I could buy just one shoe at half the price!"

He just needed the right one.

Hailing from a village in Lhasa, capital of Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region, he lost his left foot in a traffic accident in 2000.

Each time he bought a new pair of shoes, Phuntsok often wished to find someone who needed the left ones. Then he met Ngawang Tendar about two years ago.

They met at a wheelchair basketball game organized by a mutual friend. Ngawang Tendar, 35, had been a doctor in Lhasa for seven years. He lost his right leg when he was 8 due to an accident.

Soon they became friends and "shoe partners" as their feet are the same size.

"After that, whenever we bought new shoes, we would share them," Phuntsok said, adding that they first shared a pair of sneakers, since they both love sports.

Phuntsok used to wear something invented by his father with an old shoe and a piece of tire stitched together. It did not look good, and when he wore it, the left leg was still shorter than the other.

"I'd always dreamed I could walk as I did before the accident," he said. However, a local prosthetics producer disappointed him every time he inquired.

In March, things turned in his favor.

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