In case you missed it, we announced the winners of Amplitude’s Creative Solutions Contest on our website in early December. We’ll introduce those individuals to you in just a second, but first we’d like to thank everyone who submitted an entry and helped to make the contest a success. You sent us photos, hand-drawn blueprints, and bullet-pointed descriptions. We were impressed.
Our judging panel was led by Joe Johnson of Quorum Prosthetics (a certified prosthetist and left below-knee amputee) and Johnny Maynard of the popular YouTube channel Crew9t (right below-knee). The judging was wholly subjective, but opinions converged on a handful of standout entries. Without further ado, let’s meet the winners.
Molly Null, Piqua, OH
“I love flowers,” says Null, a bilateral leg and multi-finger amputee since 2008. “I’m in the garden all summer. That’s my passion.” When she became a patient liaison for Action Prosthetics in southeastern Ohio five years ago, Null began salvaging test sockets that were discarded after fittings. “I could just picture the flowers in them,” she explains. It took some trial and error to find the optimal spot to drill holes for the chain, but once the concept was done it became hugely popular with members of the support group she leads (Amputees Coming Together, Informing Others’ Needs, or A.C.T.I.O.N). “I started giving them out as prizes at picnics and holiday parties,” Null says, “and it just took off.” At last check she had a couple dozen sockets in her garage, awaiting conversion.
John Radoszewski, Williamsville, NY
Leg lamps have been a running joke among lower-limb amputees ever since A Christmas Story came out in 1983, but Radoszewski wasn’t thinking of that movie when he built his creation. “What else can you do with a leg?” he asks. An emeritus orthotist, Radoszewski has spent decades working with limb technology. That particular leg sat in his workshop for about 20 years, until the forced hibernation of COVID finally gave him a chance to do something with it. “I finished it right before you announced your contest,” he says. The sandal base—a touch that particularly delighted our judges—was a lucky find at a thrift store. “These things just fell into place,” Radoszewski explains.
Jim Heath, Rosemount, MN
Golf ball holder
Sadly, we have to report that Heath passed away on November 3, 2020, shortly after he submitted his entry to our contest. His wife, Evy, reports that Jim was a lifelong athlete, excelling at baseball and basketball in high school and later serving as a baseball coach and umpire. He was an 8-handicap golfer who could drive it 300 yards and scored one glorious hole-in-one. After amputation of his left leg below the knee three years ago, Jim became the master of the “prosthetic putt,” removing his leg and using it to tap in gimmes for a few laughs. The third-place prize money will be donated to an amputee golf fundraiser in the future.