Can you imagine what it would be like for a marathoner to hear that they would never be able to walk again? That’s what happened to one Western New York man named Ken Burke. 

What You Need To Know

  • A WNY marathoner was told that he would never be able to run again after an accident
  • Ken Burke says at first, he became very depressed
  • He then decided that he was going to beat the odds, run again, and help others 

“Every moment of every day, we each have two decisions in life: we can choose love or we can choose fear,” says Burke.

Back in 2018, he was walking his dog on his skateboard near the Buffalo Bills’ stadium.

“As I jumped off, I planted my leg into the ground. My left leg just exploded. I looked down after I slammed my head into the ground. My leg was bent just below the hip here. My knee was over here,” explained Burke.

After learning that he had shattered his leg in six places, Ken spent eight long months not being able to walk and hardly leaving the couch. Depression set in. 

“My weight ended up ballooning to almost 284 pounds. They told me I’d never be able to be active again,” says Burke.

That’s when he decided he wasn’t only going to run again, he was going to conquer an Olympic-distance triathlon, climb Mount Marcy, and complete Ironman Lake Placid 70.3 — which he did.

Now he wakes up at 5 a.m. every single day to train.

“We’re all writing our own story. I’m just trying to be the hero of mine,” added Burke.

He continues to work on improving his life and also the lives of others. Now an organ donor, he is constantly thinking about ways to help those around him.