On September 19th, Li Longbiao walked onto his university campus in Dongguan, Guangdong province, with short hair, fashionable glasses and a muscular upper body; however, a quick glance his way will tell you that Li doesn’t look the same as other incoming first-year students. When he walks around campus, he turns heads everywhere. He may stand shorter than everyone else, but he certainly stands out.
Li was born 23 years ago in a small town in Guangdong province. A few months after he was born, he was diagnosed with a spinal cord tumor. With limited financial resources, his parents sent Li to a health center in town for treatment. Unexpectedly, that operation was not a success. Not only was the tumor on his spine not completely removed, but the surgery also caused nerve damage down his legs, ChinaNews reports.
The tragic mishap led to Li’s upper-body developing just like the rest of his peers, while his lower body did not. “Ever since I can remember, I haven’t been able to walk. When I was in kindergarten, I was using crutches,” he recalls.
To make sure that his mind would not fall behind as well, Li’s parents eventually enrolled him in primary school. At first, it was incredibly difficult. “In the beginning, my classmates saw me as different. They would give me all these nasty nicknames,” he remembers. He quickly learned to swallow these insults and spit them right back out at the bullies.
However, as time went by, Li began to simply shrug off all the insults and abuse. “I’m used to it, it’s fine,” he would say. By middle school, his performance both inside and outside of the classroom was the same as his classmates, in fact he was one of the top students in his class. Eventually, he fulfilled his dream of testing into a high school in the city.
“He’s a student with an extremely strong personality,” one of his teachers said, adding that he was optimistic and had a mind that excelled at independent thinking. It’s been less than a month since Li started university and he’s already been all over campus. While there are some things that he can’t do alone, like pick up his own meals at the campus cafeteria, there is nothing he hasn’t been able to overcome.
[Images via ChinaNews]