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‘People Are Helping Me’: Scott James Talks Journey To Receive Prosthetic Leg

Scott James takes his first few steps with the new prosthetic leg. Submitted photo

Anyone looking for motivation to not give up need look no further than Scott James.

More well-known as Scotty, James has had struggles with his diabetes for years, which led to having problems with his foot. He had an operation in December to remove his toes, which was later followed by an operation to take his leg below the knee because of gangrene. James has been a resident of Heritage Park since February, working on rehab and more recently getting a prosthetic leg.

James said the experience has been very challenging.

“It’s been a lot of change,” James said. “People who know me know I hate changing. I’m out here trying to help people and now people are helping me.”

James is a well known booster of local sports teams, most lately at Falconer Central School with girls soccer, softball and wrestling. He also used to coach baseball. James is 48 years old and has been involved with the local sports scene for more than 30 years. James thanked all of the coaches at Falconer, along with the physical therapy staff at Heritage Park and everyone else who has been a help to him. James hopes to be discharged soon. James said doing rehab has been going well and helping him regain strength and eat healthier.

Scott “Scotty” James works with his physical therapy team to use his new prosthetic leg for the first time. Submitted photo

“I’ve been here since February, and some people thought I’d be better at home, but no,” James said. “They are helping me a lot here with walking and upper body strength.”

Heritage Park has been helping him manage his diabetes better as well. James said he is on a good diet now, but still has good and bad days. Once he is finally able to be discharged and return home, he said he plans on taking better care of himself.

“I will work on my diabetes and take better care of myself,” James said. “It’s not going to be easy. It’s never easy for anybody. Diabetes is a bad thing I have.”

Following what has been happening to him over the last few months and before, one of James’s main goals now is helping people to learn more about diabetes and how to take care of themselves. James’s parents also have diabetes and he wants to help people know more. James’s goal is to talk with people about diabetes, including high school kids. In the future he is also looking forward to returning to the sidelines at area sports events. James talks with the athletes on the teams he follows, offering them support and working to get them onto the right path. He

For those facing a similar experience to James, he said the most important thing is taking care of yourself and getting checked.

“Listen to the doctor and the people that tell you about your diabetes,” James said. “I didn’t listen one time, and thought people didn’t know what they were talking about. Now I know.”

Other hopes James has for the future is to keep his diabetes down with no more hospital visits and to be healthy. He hopes to be an advocate for diabetes awareness and to help kids who might have diabetes or be nervous about getting it. The team at Heritage Park has been helping James with his insulin, which he has to take every 24 hours. James works to make an impact on people of all ages, including seniors in Heritage Park, the community and the kids he coaches.

Overall, James said being healthy is an important way to live every day.

“You have to live every day, because you don’t know what tomorrow is going to bring,” James said. “I want to say thank you to all of the coaches that help me out at Falconer. People call me every day and ask if I need anything. People care about me a lot.”

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