John Tartaglio

First and Only Person in History to Run and complete a Marathon Without Legs

On August 22nd, 2004 at the age of 17 John Tartaglio was diagnosed with an extremely rare bacterial infection that would change his life forever. With only 35 patients recorded in medical history contracting the disease, John’s fate was dire. Doctors were left with no choice but to amputate his legs and left bicep the night he was diagnosed. John was only given a 20% chance to live, but he survived the effects of the devasting infection.

A mere 5 years after being told by medical and prosthetic professionals that he would never walk again, John is the first and only person in history to run and complete a marathon without legs.

Through rigorous training John is able to compete in triathlons, road races, and cycling events. John enrolled into Fairfield University in 2005 and is a graduate of the class of 09’. During his time in school John has competed in various triathlons including a half iron man (70.3 mile) triathlon. He also became the first person with no legs to run and complete a 5k and a 10k. Taking it a step further, John made history running the 26.2 mile New York City marathon on November 1, 2009.

For years John has spoken to audiences about overcoming adversity, building a positive attitude, leadership, and teamwork. He empowers audiences with his story. He challenges them to reach their goals, raise their personal standards, and expect more out of themselves because he has shown time and time again that anything is possible. From corporate clients to educational institutions John has shown that “How far you fall doesn’t determine who you are, it’s how hard you work to get back up.”

To book overcoming adversity speaker John Tartaglio call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.

See Below for Full Bio

  • Speaking Topics:

    Attitude, Leadership, Overcoming Adversity, Teambuilding

  • Travels From:

    Connecticut

  • Price:

    $10,000 - $15,000

    Notes on Fees

  • Videos
  • Full Bio
  • Speech Topics
  • Books
  • Testimonials
  • News

Pursue what you value to achieve anything you want: John Tartaglio

On August 22nd, 2004 at the age of 17 John Tartaglio was diagnosed with an extremely rare bacterial infection that would change his life forever. With only 35 patients recorded in medical history contracting the disease, John’s fate was dire. Doctors were left with no choice but to amputate his legs and left bicep the night he was diagnosed. John was only given a 20% chance to live, but he survived the effects of the devasting infection.

A mere 5 years after being told by medical and prosthetic professionals that he would never walk again, John is the first and only person in history to run and complete a marathon without legs.

Through rigorous training John is able to compete in triathlons, road races, and cycling events. John enrolled into Fairfield University in 2005 and is a graduate of the class of 09’. During his time in school John has competed in various triathlons including a half iron man (70.3 mile) triathlon. He also became the first person with no legs to run and complete a 5k and a 10k. Taking it a step further, John made history running the 26.2 mile New York City marathon on November 1, 2009.

For years John has spoken to audiences about overcoming adversity, building a positive attitude, leadership, and teamwork. He empowers audiences with his story. He challenges them to reach their goals, raise their personal standards, and expect more out of themselves because he has shown time and time again that anything is possible. From corporate clients to educational institutions John has shown that “How far you fall doesn’t determine who you are, it’s how hard you work to get back up.”

To book overcoming adversity speaker John Tartaglio call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.

  • Overcoming adversity
  • Building a positive attitude
  • Leadership
  • Teamwork
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Executive Director of Connecticut Medical Group Management Association

The Connecticut Medical Group Management Association was fortunate to have John Tartaglio as our Key Note Speaker at Our Annual June Expo. John was wonderful, informative and entertaining. He shared his inspirational story and explained to us what’s possible when ordinary people are pushed to extreme limits. A very engaging presentation, very intense and his story taught us to appreciate life to the fullest. I would recommend him as a speaker.

Oprah Winfrey

"John you are such an inspiration!"

Corporate Diversity and Work Life Highmark

"John, thank you so much for your inspirational message. We had supplied the students with a survey asking them about their favorite part of the event - in the majority of instances they indicated you and your message!!! Thank you again and we look forward to recommending you for future events both at and outside of Highmark!!"

Blue Cross Blue Shield

"John, I wanted to say thank you for speaking at the National Disability Mentoring Day at Highmark. Your story is truly inspiring! It is a great gift that you give to others by sharing your story and experiences."
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