A visionary, according to Merriam-Webster, is someone “having or showing clear ideas about what should happen or be done in the future.”
However, that appellation seems to be reserved for the titans of industry, pioneers of medicine, the great masters of the arts and so forth. And in certain respects, those that do the heavy lifting needed to shift, shape and recreate paradigms duly earn that distinction and honor.
But at its core, a visionary is someone who not only has the ability to imagine what can be, but is then able to put forth the effort, make the commitment and endure the failures to “see” it all the way through.
No matter what.
And more often than not, when one envisions something so positive, affirming and life changing others cannot help but be drawn towards it.
To see themselves in it.
And ultimately, gain some level of benefit, derive inspiration, finally envisioning themselves there as well.
To all of us, this is a short video of Brad Beschta – HHS 2012 – taking a short jog across a field, aided by a newly designed prosthetic leg.
But to Brad, it is probably the outward realization of a vision he has carried within for quite some time.
His willingness to share this brings clarity. Sharpens the focus. Creates a vision as to what can be done in the future.
“I’m getting fitted by the Amputee Blade Runners organization which is a nonprofit that donates running legs to aspiring amputee athletes.” explained Brad.
He went on:
“I was picked to receive the grant and get fitted as their sponsor and to try out their new blade products. It’s a great cause and the biggest thing they advocate is to pay it forward to help someone else in the future!”
But this wasn’t simply a matter of ask and you shall receive. He had to apply for the grant, complete at least three 5k’s to be considered and then be selected from what I imagine was a larger pool of worthy applicants.
Perhaps Brad’s involvement with Human Connections helped his cause. It is a non-profit organization founded on the notion that seeing the world from diverse perspectives inspires vision, innovation, and action towards lasting social change.
Perhaps to the Amputee Blade Runners organization, it was more than just a prosthetic.
In many ways, the individual they selected needed to share their vision. Kindle the imagination. And become the embodiment of their vision for the future.
Maybe at first it was just about getting around.
Going for a jog.
Running across that field.
Truly amazing things start to happen as you get closer to where you see yourself.
“Once I get my new running leg all fitted and ready to go I plan on competing in more events. When they finish it, I told them I wanted Badger and Wisconsin decals painted on it!”
Brad will regain the mobility a busy, purposeful, 20 something young man wants in life.
“They’re setting me up with both a walking and running foot that’s pretty much the newest technology.”
This May, Brad graduates from UW Madison where he studied Applied Economics along with a certificate in Entrepreneurship.
When asked about his plans going forward, he shared, “I am not exactly sure what I’m gonna do after college but I am considering becoming a prosthetics practitioner myself.”
In my book, this one is already visionary.
Long ago, he “saw” himself running on that field.
Perhaps his line of sight will lead others to see the same for themselves.
To envision experiencing the simple joy to be found in taking a walk, jogging down the street, around the track or competing in a 5k .
Maybe Brad will be the one to lead an industry in the future.
Or, perhaps he prefers to connect with others one at a time, paying it forward on a more personal level.
But whatever the case, one thing is for certain.
You’ll want to remember this titan.