Earlham Middle School goes the extra mile to make sure one of their students won’t fall behind in school after his life-changing surgery

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Education is taking on a new look for an Earlham Middle School student. 13-year old Gable Johnson is under doctor’s orders to stay home for two months, but he’s not missing a minute of class because of it.

“I’m in football, baseball basketball and I was planning on doing track and field this year,” said Gable Johnson.

It was rare to see 13-year-old Gable Johnson ever sitting still.

“He loves to compete and we love to watch him compete,” said Gable’s dad Jim Johnson.

But now, there’s not much else he can do. Gable was born with a bone deformity than caused his legs to bend in towards each other. His parents knew someday something would have to be done, but they never knew it would come so soon

“We were surprised. We thought one thing, knees, then we thought hips, and then we found out legs and rods. It seemed every appointment we had to process the information and make decisions that were best for Gable,” said Shelley Johnson, Gable’s mom.

Their final decision was for Gable to have surgery that would require breaking both of his legs and resetting them with a number of rods and plates.

“It was awful having to see him go through that knowing we had made the decision to do that,” said Shelley.

4 weeks after the surgery, gable is on a fast road to recovery.

“I can actually put some weight on my feet now,” said Gable.

But he’s still a ways off from going back to school.

“We were thinking this was going to be a very long 6 to 8 weeks but I`ll tell you what Skype started yesterday and we have a different kid on our hands,” said Shelley.

Just as Gable missed the classroom, his teachers and classmates missed him.

“Gable is a one of a kind kid and to be able to have him back with us even though he isn`t is a real boost to everyone here at Earlham,” said Gable’s English teacher, Denise Ory.

With the webcam, gable is treated as if he’s actually there

“This morning in lit we were reading a play so we would give him a part,” said Ory.

“When they first told me I had to read from the book, I didn`t know what to do. The first part I lost where I was for a while. It`s a little different. But it makes it more fun,” said Gable.

And Gable says it adds motivation for keeping up with his school work and towards reaching his end goal.

“I would just like to see how fast I can run now.  It would be a lot easier with straight legs,” said Gable.


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