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Founder of charity that provides prosthetics to amputees raises $500,000 ahead of marathon

Founder of charity that provides prosthetics to walk Boston Marathon after raising $500,000
Founder of charity that provides prosthetics to walk Boston Marathon after raising $500,000 02:05

BOSTON - The founder of a charity that's raised half a million dollars to provide prosthetic legs to fellow amputees will be taking part in Monday's marathon.

Helping amputees live mobile, independent lives

Steve Chamberland has made it his life's mission to serve and provide as many kids and adults with high-quality prosthetic legs free of charge through 50 Legs, the nonprofit he founded.

"Every kid should have a chance to live a normal life as an amputee," said Chamberland.

Boston Marathon bombing victims Jeff Bauman and Celeste Corcoran have been recipients helped by 50 Legs.

"When we help somebody, we fly them to Orlando, we pay for their hotel and we get their legs," said Chamberland.

An amputee himself, he along with his support guide will be walking the full 26.2-mile Boston Marathon route to help raise money for 50 Legs. To date, he's raised an impressive $500,000 in his marathon fundraiser. For Chamberland, the funds mean more kids he can help live a normal life.

"I get to see these kids' first steps, I get to see adults' first steps. Thank god the [Boston Athletic Association] let us be a part of this. This is the first year we're really a charity for the BAA," said Chamberland.

More than 800 legs provided over 14 years

Over the past 14 years, 50 Legs have provided more than 800 prosthetic legs to people across the country. Chamberland said he can't thank his team and supports enough for making a difference in the lives of so many people.

"Man, I just want to say thanks because without them, we don't get to help these kids," said Chamberland. He'll be thinking about those kids and adults with each step he takes on Monday. "When you see somebody walk for the first time with a pair of legs that works for them and you see their face there's just excitement, holy moly. When I am walking, I'm just going to focus on not giving up and thankful that there's so many people donating to us that believe in us."

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