Prosthetic maker speaks on movie - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Prosthetic maker speaks on movie

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One of the most popular movies in the country right now is "Dolphin Tail" about a baby dolphin who lost her tail in a crab trap.

A prosthetic expert created a special tail to allow that dolphin to swim.

That man, who is played by Morgan Freeman in the movie, came to Albany, Tuesday, to educate and inspire amputees.

Kevin Carroll is the vice president of prosthetics for Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics, and spent the day at the office in Albany educating amputees about new technology in the field.

James Wilkes, Amputee.

After 30 years in the field, Kevin Carroll travels around the world educating prosthetic practitioners and amputees.

"People that I see inspire me and allow me to do amazing things, no matter what condition they come in with, we see ways of making life better for them," says Kevin Carroll, Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics, Prosthetics V.P.

And that is exactly what he did for a baby dolphin named Winter who lost her tail in a crab trap.

He heard her story on the radio and wanted to help.

"I started calling my colleagues and a lot of them laughed and said it won't work, it will fall off her body," says Carroll.

Alongside his colleague Dan Strempka and a team of marine biologists and veterinarians, he came up with an innovative prosthetic tail for Winter.

Carroll was in Albany, Tuesday, showing amputees what is available with prosthetic technology and what's on the horizon.

"Micro processor knees, new feet, some very interesting things happening in the field of prosthetics," says Carroll.

James Wilkes lost his leg 16 years ago when a roll of metal weighing almost 1000 pounds fell on his foot.

"When the weather gets bad, you still feel it, you still feel your toes and everything else that is involved with it, you just cant scratch them," says James Wilkes, Amputee.

Wilkes came to speak with Carroll about the new technology that might benefit him.

"To see different kinds of legs and everything," says Wilkes.

Carroll says Winter's story has inspired people all over the country.

"One little girl in California that could not walk with her prosthetic leg, she was badly burned as a baby, lost her leg all the way up to her hip, because of Winter and Winter's technology, she is walking today," says Carroll.

And he hopes Winter's story will continue to inspire.

Carroll and his team volunteered their nights, weekends and holidays to do this project.

And if you are wondering if he liked the movie, he told me he loved it.

You can see Winter the dolphin swimming with her prosthetic tail online through a live webcam, click www.seewinter.com

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