LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - After traveling hundreds of miles from Rhode Island, 5-year-old Lucas Resch gets to walk with the use of a prosthetic leg for the first time thanks to a group of Purdue students.
Lucas was born with a rare birth defect that made his left leg much shorter than his right. The condition is known as Proximal Femoral Focal Deficiency, or PFFD.
Because Lucas has a foot, Purdue biomedical engineering student Alex Guerra said it adds an extra challenge to the design of the leg.
"We're having to work around his foot and actually we're trying to use his foot motion to work his new prosthetic knee," Guerra said.
Guerra and other Purdue students have been working on the leg since August.
Lucas's father, Ned Resch, said he was the one who contacted the students about possibly creating a new leg after surfing the web. He said he saw a video of students creating a leg for another little boy named Bryce.
"I came across a video on YouTube of Bryce and his prosthetic that they developed through the engineering department at Purdue and contacted them from there," Resch said.
Resch said the rest is history and he's excited to see his little boy walk.
"We're very excited," Resch said. "I think that we're just anxious to see the final product. I know that they're still in the initial phases of the prosthetic, but we're very excited. I think it's going to be great."
The students who have been working on the leg for months said they feel the same way.
"We're so excited," Guerra said. "It's going to be fun today. We've been up since 6 o'clock this morning. We're working and making sure everything is ready, so as tired as we are today those first couple of steps are what we're waiting for."
The leg is just a prototype and Lucas and his family will travel back to Lafayette once the final model is complete in a few months.
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