SCALING NEW HEIGHTS: Paralyzed Man Climbs the Grand Canyon With Some Help from his Family

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A family that hikes together, stays together.

The arduous trek through the Grand Canyon can challenge even the fittest of athletes. Bob Headings learned that firsthand when he and a friend hiked to the bottom and back a year before he took a fall that left him paralyzed.

A decade after that accident, the Columbus, Ohio, man retraced the steps of his journey, this time with family wanting to honor his constant optimism and vigor.

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“Dad was always the type — when someone told him he couldn’t do something, by golly, he was going to do it,” said son Rick Headings.

Earlier this year, that meant taking another trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.

“I didn’t hesitate. I mean, I said, ‘I’m ready to go,” Bob Headings recalled when hearing about the idea.

Headings lost use of his legs following a life-changing accident in 2005.

“That ladder shifted, I lost my balance and I knew right then I was paralyzed,” he said. “I couldn’t feel my legs.”

Headings faced his new reality with a signature grace and determination, the same traits he would rely on for his second hike through the Grand Canyon. This time, he would make the journey with his three sons and eight grandsons.

“It just seemed like a way for us as a family to give back to Dad,” said son Randy Headings.

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