There are times when we find our strength and calling during moments of adversity. Natalie Bieule, ’11, learned that lesson when on March 8, 2011 she was involved in a drunk driving accident that led to her becoming a below-the-knee amputee. Today, she is a stronger person than ever before.
Many told her that her way of living would never be the same and that she was now limited, but Bieule refused to accept that option. Determined to not become a victim, she poured her free time into education and athletics: first, by getting her degree in psychology from Barry University with the goal of helping children overcome difficulties in their own lives; second - training her body with cross-fit.
While helping troubled, at-risk children as a fourth grade teacher, she began competing against able-bodied athletes in cross-fit competitions, which led to a call from the United States Paralympic committee.
Bieule, who is a 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award Rising Star honoree, continues to inspire her students and her own daughters. She found sudden success in the discus competitions, and during the 2014 U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships Natalie won her first national title in the women’s F44 discus: a bronze medal.
She is now looking to inspire more people as she prepares to represent the United States in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. Bieule is part of Team Kelloggs and is currently featured on the cover of Kelloggs Corn Flakes.