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LA Deputy Sherriff, A Recent Amputee, Received Holiday Surprise: The Gift of Running

After losing his leg in a hit-and-run motorcycle accident, second-generation peace office Garrett Rifkin was granted a running prosthesis through Challenge Athlete Foundations, Operation Rebound.

Garrett Rifkin

Thanks to a hush-hush collaboration between Rifkin’s family, Össur, and the Challenged Athletes Foundation’s (CAF) Operation Rebound, an Össur Flex-Run with Nike Sole prosthetic foot will be presented to Rifkin by company executives and Operation Rebound Ambassador Chappie Hunter, a San Diego police Detective and amputee who uses the same running leg Rifkin received. Operation Rebound helps empower veterans, military personnel and first responders with permanent physical injuries through sports.

Garrett Rifkin

From the time he graduated at 20 as the youngest member of his Sheriff’s Academy class, through his accident and ongoing recovery, Garrett Rifkin has inspired everyone around him with his positive attitude and determination to set a swift course toward a bright future.

August 3, 2018, Rifkin was riding his motorcycle from his Santa Clarita home to work at the West Hollywood Sheriff’s station when a car suddenly cut across lanes of traffic and crashed into him. The driver got out of his car, saw Rifkin bleeding on the ground, and fled the scene. He was later found and arrested.

After undergoing six surgeries to try and save his badly injured foot, Rifkin, 25, was given a choice: to be permanently disabled and never run again, or to amputate his leg below the knee. Rifkin chose amputation, and recently returned to desk duty.

Rifkin’s dream of being able to run again on the job and someday with his future children seemed a tall order as prostheses for running are considered a luxury and are not covered by most insurance companies.

Garrett Rifkin

When Rifkin’s family friend, an Össur employee, shared Rifkin’s story and asked about the possibility of obtaining a prosthetic running leg for Christmas, Össur mobilized quickly to work with CAF’s Operation Rebound to donate the state-of-the-art running prosthesis. Össur also collaborated closely with Rifkin’s prosthetist to fabricate his prosthesis in our Complete Leg facility in Orlando, FL without tipping Rifkin off.

On December 18, Garrett came onsite to Össur’s Foothill Ranch, CA location for the grant presentation. Held in front of Össur employees, and of course his family friend from the Össur Customer Care department, the give was a great reminder of how Össur helps people live a life without limitations.

There were seven local media stations there. Watch coverage of the event here.