PUEBLO — For local skydiver Tommy Fergerson, fear is not an option.
“I just enjoy what I do and I have fun,” Fergerson said. “The biggest thing is enjoy life and live life to its fullest.”
It’s the message of his nonprofit, Clasp Life, which helps people keep their passion and independence after an accident or life-changing event.
“It’s almost like practice what you preach,” Fergerson said. “It’s my passion to get back up and get back to going again, and get back out there, and to not stop.”
A skydiving accident in 2011 cost him his left arm, and his most recent skydiving accident four months ago left him relearning how to walk, write and speak.
“I ended up breaking 12 bones total,” Fergerson said. “I broke my femur in two places, broke my pelvis, broke my back and five vertebrates. I broke five ribs, I damaged my kidney, and I damaged my heart. And like I said, on top of that, I went ahead and just threw a stoke in there, just for good measure.”
But it’s Fergerson’s message of perseverance that got Lisa Hendricks involved with Clasp Life.
“I went through a big depression after I had my hand done,” Hendricks said. “I wasn’t able to use it so much.”
Hendricks has a connective tissue disorder, which caused her to have surgery on her hand.
“My shoulder comes out of socket all the time,” Hendricks said. “My hips come out of socket, my knees. It creates a lot of other things because of the connective tissue disorder, so I just try to stay physically fit as lifting weights to keep me strengthened.”
So, despite the challenges they may face, both Hendricks and Fergerson took on the Manitou Incline Wednesday.
It’s their way to inspire others to keep fighting and moving forward in their journey.
“It was such a great feeling, and I did a lot better than I thought I did,” Hendricks said. “I’ll definitely do it again.”
“When you have life instances and accidents and tragedies and things, there are resources out there that can help you get back on your feet and get back to where you want to be, that you can live life back to its fullest,” Fergerson said. “We’re the feet on the ground that help you find those people.”