Katrina Simkin loves talking to her friends, going to the mall, texting on her cell phone, and doing everything else that goes along with being a 13-year-old girl. But while she is for the most part a normal teenage girl until you closely look at her, Katrina does all of the “normal” activities with just one leg. She was born with a short leg, and after 5 surgeries she is now able function with her prosthesis, which she designed herself.
Over the last 13 years Katrina and her family have endured every emotion that goes with having a child that is in and out of the hospital; all the sleepless nights, the waiting for the results of yet another surgery, trying to create a childlike atmosphere in a hospital. They have done all of this with the help of the Shriners Hospital. The Shriners have been the Simkin’s rock over the years, with their constant support and pledge to never turn a child away for financial reasons.
The Shriners provide a safe-haven for families and children to turn to while going through one of the most difficult periods in a family’s life. They encourage support groups for parents and children and oftentimes these people become family to each other, brought together by some of the most difficult circumstances.
Katrina now wants to give back. She is so thankful for how the Shriners have helped her and her family that she is now a mentor for children who are scared in Shriners Hospitals. She is a voice for the Shriners and how difficult it can be as a scared child, not knowing what’s going to happen.
Katrina is full of energy and has a spirit that is contagious, full of life, and very grateful to all who have helped her during her journey.
Katrina is excited to give back in yet another way to the Shriners this year, as she will be participating in their annual charity horse show. This Shriners event has been going on for over 20 years and is one of the longest-running equine events in America. The event takes place on 50 acres of horse ground in Columbia City, IN. It’s set for the weekend of September 23-25, with events taking place every day.