What drives a man like Robert Riza to, as he says, “get up every day and try to make it better?” Two things: a faith in God and a chip on his shoulder, both of which are the result of what he refers to simply as “the accident.”
Robert was just 12 years old and growing up in Cleburne, TX, when he set out on his bicycle the afternoon of March 6, 1981, with plans to go fishing with his grandfather. He never made it and instead ended up unconscious and with his left leg pinned beneath a tractor-trailer. He has no memory of the details of what happened; but when he woke up a week later, his left leg had been amputated below the knee.
Such a devastating injury might have led to a life of excuses for some, but one of the first people to come to young Robert’s hospital bedside was Sterling Underwood, a draftsman in his grandfather’s business and an amputee. “It’s not the end of the world,” he told Robert, and he became a companion for the boy as he was fitted with a prosthesis and learned to deal with his new reality.
Also a physical therapist, Briddy Finn, told Robert, “There’s nothing you can’t achieve. You’re just going to have to work harder for it.”
And that’s exactly what he did. He worked and worked hard; and if someone said “you can’t do it,” he just worked harder and showed them differently. He even threw himself into athletics.
Robert once asked Underwood how he could repay him, and he replied, “One day it will be your turn.” Robert says he’s done the same for other amputees, and he thinks he has something important to do.
“I believe God has left me here to achieve something great. A verse I use when I speak is Jeremiah 29:11,” Riza said. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Now he’s using that same attitude and faith as a motivational speaker, consultant, and coach.
Hire Robert Riza as a speaker at your next event, to motivate your employees, to coach you one-on-one, or as a consultant. Contact us not to find out more about Robert's services and available dates.