Meth Mom's Double-Amputee Daughter Runs Road Race

By McCarton Ackerman 02/03/12

New carbon-fiber prosthetics helped the nine-year-old girl run her first mile-long race.

Miracle roadrunner Jessy Hatch. Photo via

Nine-year-old Jessy Hatch—who underwent a double leg amputation at 11 months old due to a genetic condition caused by her birth mother's meth addiction—completed her first-ever long-distance race, the one-mile Kids Rock run in Tempe, Ariz., which raises money for children with physical disabilities. Hatch, who has never met her biological mother and lives with adoptive parents in Phoenix, learned to walk using prosthetic legs, before switching to carbon-fiber blades at the end of last year in order to compete in sporting events. Her foster mother, Dawn Hatch, said that getting her daughter into the new prosthetics has been a lifetime process. "A double amputee exerts 250 percent more energy walking than we do, [and] a little three- or four-year-old can't take in the 2,100 calories needed to walk on artificial legs," she explained. "So Jessy had to have a feeding tube inserted into her stomach to beef her up. We just took it out in June 2011. After that, she could have her running legs as she'd built up enough muscle mass." The young girl also helps run a charity called "Jessy for Jeans," which collects clothing for disadvantaged kids.

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.