May 2013

I just had my 9 month checkup after a very complex hip reconstruction and hip replacement surgery. Dr. Leone is so happy with the development and I am proud of the work he did. I was always on the go even with my disability and severe limp. It didn’t stop me from doing all of the things that I enjoy. Unfortunately, running and even walking became so painful that I had to make the choice to have more surgery. After meeting Dr. Leone the first time, I waited two more years until I couldn’t stand the pain any longer.

I can’t describe the feeling now that I can walk without any limp (the first time in my life). The pain in my hip is gone and my back no longer hurts. I still catch myself watching my reflection in a shopping window and I am so amazed to see myself walk so straight.

I am attaching an essay that Janet and I wrote that won us a six-day bike tour through the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

If you ever have any doubts about your surgery and your success, then speak to Dr. Leone. He is deeply committed, immensely caring, infinitely wise and profoundly devoted.

With Great Appreciation,
Uli Schackman

Winning essay for Mother’s Day Outer Bank Tour
“Awarded to brave women who rise above adversity and loss”

Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Born in Germany with displaced hips and a shorter right leg, Uli lived in an orphanage until she was 17. Uli never let her handicap or the multiple surgeries over the years (most recently hip reconstruction and replacement) stop her. From working as a housecleaner and gardener to support herself when she first came to this country, to bicycling in 11 AIDS Rides throughout the world and raising thousands for this and other causes, Uli always gives 150%.

The rapport when we met was instantaneous. Maybe it because my mother had been born with the same condition and had never let it hold her back either. Perhaps it was that, like me, she’d been on her own for so long (I’ve been working full time since my mom died when I was 16); or was it our shared enjoyment of dancing, outdoor activities and competing? Maybe it was our love of the USA, of which she is now a proud citizen, and the commitment we both make to volunteer for our country and our community. Despite being the same age, Uli’s nurturing nature makes her my surrogate mom who deserves this Mother/Daughter trip.