Luther College Student Walks at Graduation after Paralyzing Injury

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DECORAH, Iowa -- After suffering a paralyzing injury, a Luther College student was able to walk across the stage for his graduation on Sunday.

Chris Norton suffered a spinal injury while playing football for Luther College five years ago. The injury left him paralyzed from the neck down. Doctors told him he had a three percent chance of ever walking again.

Even with the diagnosis from doctors, Norton wouldn't be discouraged.

“I made it publicly known that I wanted to walk across the stage at graduation,” Norton said.

Norton has spent years in therapy and formed the SCI CAN Foundation to help others with spinal injuries.

During his years of therapy Norton also met Emily Summers, who was very influential on his road to recovery. With Summers at his side over the weekend, he was able to walk to receive his diploma.

“I didn't know how I was going to walk across the stage but I knew it was going to happen,” Norton said.

For Norton, that wasn't even the highlight of his weekend. On Saturday, Norton proposed to Summers and she accepted.

The two will now go back to Michigan, where Chris receives care.

Before then, Norton and Summers joined the 4 p.m. newscast on Tuesday to discuss their remarkable story.

You can view the full interview in the video above.

To learn more about Norton's recovery and his foundation, click here.


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