Fracturing his spine in two places was not enough to stop Max Wildstar from reaching the heights of competitive speed skating. After sustaining such a severe injury, many expected him to give up on his dreams. But giving up just wasn't an option for Wildstar, a speed skater since the fourth grade.
Surprising almost everyone, in the same year as his injury, this inspiring young man went on to win two medals at the BC Winter Games. He also attended Canada's national speed skating competition as a member of Team BC.
Wildstar is quick to thank his family, friends and teachers for their support as he went through months of rehabilitation. Thanks to his father, Wildstar says he knows the value of hard work and he believes that is what gave him the strength to overcome his injury.
It's the same hard work that helps Wildstar succeed off the ice as well. Despite a rigorous training schedule, he continues to achieve good grades and he is interested in eventually completing a degree in business once he graduates.
With plans to compete again this year, Wildstar currently trains for up to two hours at least three days per week on the ice. He is optimistic about his prospects for greater success on the rink. He says he hopes to stand on that podium again, not just provincially, but also nationally and maybe even, one day, globally.