Double amputee shares her story of leaving the wheelchair behind
Yvonne Llanes returned to the boot camp she said started her mobility journey.
— -- Yvonne Llanes, a double amputee, is seeing the world differently these days -- and she says it's beautiful.
This week, she shared her mobility story to motivate and inspire other amputees at Hanger Clinic's double above-knee amputee boot camp in Oklahoma City -- the same event she participated in in April 2015, at the request of her father.
"I'm hoping that by seeing what I'm doing and by seeing how far I've come in my journey, that they too can see that they can do it, as well," she said. "It is possible to get up again."
In September 2005, Llanes of Yuma, Arizona, was in a store parking lot, putting bags in the back of her sport utility vehicle. She was hit from behind by another car and pinned between the vehicles. Doctors had to amputate her legs above the knee. She was 36 years old.
After Llanes was hospitalized and received rehabilitation, she started using a wheelchair.
"I was just depressed. I was sad. I was mad at the world, was mad at everything and everybody. And I wanted my life back," she told ABC News in January. "I wanted my legs back."
She spent nine years and seven months in a wheelchair. Then, keeping a promise to her father, she attended the boot camp in Oklahoma. It was a game-changer. She said she saw fellow amputees walking around, not requiring the use of wheelchairs or other devices.
"I was just incredibly amazed and I looked at them and I told myself, 'I want to be like them,'" she said.
Llanes, now 48, and living in San Antonio, Texas, said she began standing, taking her first steps with the use of prosthetics.
"It felt absolutely spectacular," she said. "I was viewing the world from a totally different angle. It was so powerful."
The married mother for four told ABC News that she hoped to start running and that she wanted to show people that they should never give up on their dreams.
"From this point on, I will be up. I will be walking," she said. "When I finally decided to rise and get up out of my chair and start my mobility journey, I saw that life is indeed beautiful and I don't want to waste any more time," she said.
ABC News' Susan Schwartz contributed to this story.