CLOSINGS: View Closings

Paralyzing injury can't keep student from walking at graduation

It's a rite of passage for many in the metro right now -- walking across that stage at graduation. For one young man ...

Posted: May 22, 2018 4:31 PM
Updated: May 22, 2018 4:31 PM

It's a rite of passage for many in the metro right now -- walking across that stage at graduation. For one young man in Excelsior Springs, it took a lot more than just making the grades to get there.

FOX4 told you about Greg Murphy before. In 2016, an ATV accident paralyzed him from the chest down. Yet this weekend, he managed to walk across the stage.

At Excelsior Springs High School Friday night, as Greg Murphy's name was called, the crowd cheered. As he was wheeled onto the stage, the crowd continued to cheer. Then, as a silver walker was pulled from a hiding spot, the crowd grew silent. It was at that moment that the crowd knew.

It took a lot for Greg Murphy to get to this moment.

"I just waited on my name to get called," the graduate explained. "And once it did, I went up there. I had the help of my two friends, locked my legs out, stood up and then took the steps across the stage."

"I don't remember a whole lot," he said, "because when I stood up, everything went really quiet in my head. I remember looking around, and seeing people standing up, but I didn't hear anything, really. But looking back on the video, I can tell it's really loud."

Greg Murphy says it nonchalantly; his demeanor does not convey how much work it took to get to this point.

"We're all different people for it," said his mother Angie, "but we're all better people for it."

On Presidents Day weekend 2016, an ATV flipped onto Greg, landing on his chest and paralyzing the high school football and basketball player.

It took months of physical therapy, both in Denver and Kansas City, and every ounce of determination Greg had to swing his 6-foot-6 frame across that stage Friday night.

It was just a few dozen feet, but for a man who has been paralyzed for years, it was freedom.

"It meant a lot," said Greg. "It's been my goal. It's been my goal since the day I got hurt just to do that."

He continued, "I don't want to go just four or five steps and have to stop," he said. "If I was going to do it all, I was going to be sure I went all the way across."

That same tenacity will drive him to college in University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg this August. After that, he hopes to walk into his future.

"If I never stopped during this, then I don't think there's anything else in life that could happen to me," he said, "that could make me stop doing whatever it is I'm doing. If I can deal with this, I can deal with anything really."

Already, he's taken the first steps.

Greg's steps are also making the rounds on social media. "It keeps growing," he said. "Every time I look at the number of total views, it just keeps getting bigger and bigger."

The former high school athlete is glad that his message resonates with so many.

"They're seeing it, and maybe I'm inspiring them to do stuff. As long as they're seeing it, and getting something out of it, that's all that really matters."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 289303

Reported Deaths: 3434
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin616511100
Ramsey25903487
Anoka20522218
Dakota20096183
Washington13066109
Stearns1291098
St. Louis7935101
Scott782754
Wright702436
Olmsted626134
Sherburne538640
Clay463856
Carver432213
Blue Earth387112
Rice386033
Kandiyohi373819
Crow Wing334631
Nobles298729
Chisago29358
Otter Tail282818
Benton278642
Winona258128
Mower241323
Douglas237631
Polk234423
Morrison219524
Lyon201911
McLeod195610
Beltrami194615
Becker187512
Goodhue185727
Steele17826
Itasca176124
Isanti174316
Todd171612
Carlton165710
Nicollet150823
Freeborn14465
Mille Lacs141630
Le Sueur138110
Waseca134011
Cass12849
Brown125011
Pine12458
Meeker11308
Roseau10503
Hubbard103822
Martin101920
Wabasha9611
Redwood83718
Dodge8060
Chippewa8057
Watonwan7984
Cottonwood7682
Renville75119
Sibley7414
Wadena7376
Aitkin69826
Rock6829
Pipestone67818
Houston6422
Fillmore6320
Yellow Medicine59311
Pennington5856
Kanabec54912
Murray5493
Swift5366
Faribault5081
Pope4990
Stevens4643
Clearwater4536
Marshall4438
Jackson4361
Unassigned38759
Lake3816
Koochiching3535
Wilkin3465
Lac qui Parle3383
Norman3227
Lincoln3171
Big Stone2841
Mahnomen2704
Grant2516
Red Lake2033
Kittson1917
Traverse1360
Lake of the Woods931
Cook600

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 220032

Reported Deaths: 2282
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk32695327
Linn13801164
Scott1068881
Black Hawk10631132
Woodbury10061120
Johnson932336
Dubuque904191
Story666620
Dallas619957
Pottawattamie602967
Sioux362025
Webster348432
Marshall342044
Cerro Gordo340644
Clinton315939
Buena Vista297914
Des Moines278218
Muscatine278268
Warren270510
Plymouth265639
Wapello248671
Jones226913
Jasper210942
Marion200019
Lee195416
Carroll194621
Bremer188712
Henry17917
Crawford172015
Benton165116
Tama151540
Jackson140712
Delaware139621
Washington136914
Boone132911
Dickinson132710
Mahaska124127
Wright11986
Buchanan114110
Clay11184
Hardin111310
Page11074
Clayton10665
Hamilton10657
Harrison104328
Cedar103913
Calhoun10387
Fayette10149
Floyd100914
Mills10097
Kossuth10076
Lyon9988
Poweshiek97113
Butler9566
Winneshiek93311
Iowa91712
Winnebago89723
Hancock8417
Louisa83616
Grundy82611
Sac8207
Chickasaw8174
Cherokee7984
Cass78821
Mitchell7664
Appanoose76510
Allamakee76411
Shelby7469
Humboldt7435
Union7396
Emmet73624
Guthrie73015
Franklin71221
Jefferson6742
Madison6684
Palo Alto6244
Unassigned6170
Keokuk5647
Pocahontas5512
Howard5319
Greene5140
Osceola5101
Clarke4764
Ida46411
Taylor4513
Montgomery44610
Davis4455
Monroe43712
Adair4258
Monona4182
Fremont3523
Van Buren3524
Worth3470
Lucas3206
Decatur3120
Wayne2936
Audubon2922
Ringgold1982
Adams1612
Rochester
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 35° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 20°
Mason City
Clear
25° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 25°
Albert Lea
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 21°
Austin
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 37° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 23°
Charles City
Few Clouds
28° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 28°
Sunshine Returns for Friday
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Community Events