HELP FOR HARVEY – CLICK HERE TO CARE WITH 33 AND DONATE TO THE RED CROSS

Health & Hope: ‘Mr. Irrelevant’ Changing Lives of Wounded North Texans

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

DALLAS - Sometimes strength isn't measured in one's physically abilities, but rather in the power of one's mind.

“I was in a car accident. It was 1998. It left me pretty much paralyzed,” Vanessa Cantu said.

“I’m an above-the-knee amputee, secondary to a gunshot wound in Bagdad Iraq,” Christopher Livesay said.

Brian Aft said, “I was injured in Afghanistan. I was literally mid-jump, then kaboom."

Three people, three different backgrounds, one commonality: The strong desire to improve their limited mobility.

Workouts at Performance Vault in Dallas are tedious, grueling, and rewarding.

The man who runs this operation -- David Vabora, a former NFL player. In 2008, he was the last pick in the draft and unwittingly earned the nick name Mr. Irrelevant.

“I take a whole lot of pride to prove doubter wrong,” Vabora said.

Now, Mr. Irrelevant is anything but and is changing lives in north Texas.

“We talked for about an hour and he wasn’t scared of any part of my disability,” Cantu said. Vabora put Vanessa Cantu through the paces.

“I have a daughter. She’s going to be two in January and she’s walking and trying to keep herself stable and I’m like, 'That's exactly how I feel when I’m trying to walk.' So if she can fall get up and do it again, I can do that and I have to keep up with her,'” said Cantu.

Performance Vault is a non-profit organization that offers these workouts free of charge. But most importantly, it offers hope.

"Each one of these people -- Vanessa, Brian, Chris -- they all have a story and because of their courageous will-power, they can spread hope through that as well," Vabora said.