Ragged Edge Online Home

Tighter Security Measures Led To Loss Of Leg

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS--It must have been music to her ears.

Kate Horan got a call Tuesday night informing her that her missing leg had been found and would soon be delivered to her.

"That's awesome," the New Zealand Paralympic champion told the Dominion Post.

For years Horan, an amputee who once held the world record in the women's 100 meters, carried her $6,400 sprinting leg with her onto flights to and from athletic events around the world.

But last week, new limits on carry-on luggage prompted by the alleged terrorist plan to bomb U.S. flights out of London, meant that Horan had to pack the prosthetic with her luggage for her short British Airways flight to Amsterdam to compete in next week's world Paralympic track and field championships.

Unfortunately, her baggage -- including her leg -- did not arrive with her in Amsterdam. Instead, she was told it was sitting somewhere in a Heathrow warehouse, along with about 20,000 other pieces of luggage.

Horan, who at age five had her leg amputated because of a congenital illness, asked her sprinting leg's Dutch manufacturers to start working on a new one to have ready in time for the competition.

But Tuesday afternoon, Paralympic New Zealand officials were handed the leg when they arrived in London.

"It's a happy ending to the story," New Zealand Paralympic manager Helen Murphy told the New Zealand Herald late Tuesday.

September 11, 2001 and Beyond: The Impact of the Terror Attacks on People With Disabilities Inclusion Daily Express Archives

Copyright 2006 Inonit Publishing
Article reproduced here under special arrangement with Inclusion Daily Express international disability rights news service. Please do not reprint, republish or forward without permission.


It is very unfortunate that it could happen to her. I couldn't imagine how she must have felt. Anyways, good thing that it ended so well.


At least she got it back! But of all the troubles she went through. I'll be freaking out already.


If she'd had to replace her leg, she could have charged the airline $5,000 for the "updated" one.

TWA, on their last day of domestic service before being swallowed into american airlines, lost our twins' car-seats, stranding us late one night (can't drive without 'em) with 3 month olds after an eight hour cross-country flight. I was not happy.

They paid to give us rental seats, which took forever as the airport closed around us, then they sort-of "lost" our case while TWA got took-over; I kept trying to contact them about our seats, and about what to do with the rentals (which we kept using every day, but they sucked).

Was it three or six months later? We got a call from American Airlines asking "if we still had those rental seats?" which by then had cost them literally thousands of dollars. They sent us a check to buy two new seats (another few hundred dollars) and sent somebody to pick up the rentals.

They had called once with relief to say they'd found one seat, in Puerto Rico--we lived in Washington State--but when they flew it all the way out to us it turned out not to be our seat.

We never heard from our old ones again. But the kids outgrew them anyways while this was going on, so we got the next size up when they sent us the check. Free to us, except for the extreme aggravation, and my minor wonder at the money it cost them.

Glad she didn't have to go through that.

Post comment

(All entries are checked for inappropriate content before they appear on the site. Thanks for waiting.)

Powered by
Movable Type 3.2
Email this page to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):