Adonis Lattimore, a high school student in Virginia, recently made it known his disability is not an inability after he reached another inspiring milestone. Born without a right leg, Lattimore, who also has a partial left leg and only one finger on his right hand, was crowned a state wrestling champion after defeating his opponent in the Class 6 wrestling championship final on Saturday.
The Landstown High School senior won the title after defeating Lake Braddock student Korlan Tran 5-1, The Virginian-Pilot reported. “I’ve been dreaming of this since I knew what it was, and to finally have it happen is just — I don’t know how to explain it,” Lattimore told the news outlet.
“Really if you work hard, you can do anything — even win a state championship without legs.”d
Lattimore’s victory comes after he finished second in the Region A tournament. He also finished off the season with an impressive 32-7 record. A video of Saturday’s final against Tran shows Lattimore’s coach James Sanderlin jumping with excitement in the final moments of the match.
“He did all the work. I just get to be a part of the journey. It’s an amazing feeling to watch him do it and have the support of the crowd. It was awesome. He’s a hard-working young man. I’m just speechless.
“It was a goal four years ago, and this year it finally came to fruition. It was a long journey worth everything that we did.”
Lattimore’s father, Jerrold, was also at the Virginia Beach Sports Center to support his son, and the video also shows him emotionally hugging and raising him after the match.
“What we understood is that there is a greater calling on Adonis’ life that’s beyond what we could imagine,” Jerrold told The Virginian-Pilot in an earlier interview. “We also knew this wasn’t just our story. But this was our story to share.”
Lattimore’s journey to clinching a championship came with some setbacks. He initially qualified for the regionals as a freshman, but he did not remain in the competition for long. He also did not make it as a sophomore. Last year’s competition was also canceled as a result of the pandemic.
“It was pretty frustrating,” Lattimore recalled. “But I just didn’t let it get to me. I tried to bounce back knowing I had one more year.”
Lattimore’s abilities and journey haven’t also gone unnoticed as he’s been showered with support from his teammates as well as the community. “That’s been amazing,” he told WTKR about the support. “It’s a great community that’s been behind me this whole time with training, support.”
“Any school you go to, everybody knows Adonis, everybody loves him,” Landstown senior Thomas Keyes said. “I think part of that is he’s got a great personality. He’s always smiling.”
Lattimore started wrestling when he was in the second grade. He said his wish is to continue the sport in college.