Young dancer excels with prosthetic leg

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by DAVID SCHECHTER

Bio | Email | Follow: @davidschechter

WFAA

Posted on April 17, 2012 at 10:54 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 18 at 3:48 AM

FRISCO — You've heard of sleight of hand; how about sleight of foot?

Behind her grinning and foot-tapping, Miranda Cochran’s ability to dance competitively has a way of inspiring folks.

"When people tell me I inspire them, I know,” said the 12-year-old from Frisco.

What makes her inspiring?

Cochran was born without her left foot. She learned to dance and complete with a prosthetic leg.

"Sometimes I don't really think of it," she said. "I just go and do everything, and I'm like, 'Oh yeah, I have a prosthetic leg.' I just forget about it a lot."

She must've forgotten about that prosthetic leg while winning her many trophies, competing with girls who have both their legs and beating them.

But did she get special consideration?

"No," she said. "I think it should all be equal."

From the very beginning, her mom, Karrie, chose to raise her daughter with a philosophy that is paying off today.

"Pick yourself up and don't give up," Karrie Cochran said. "I've never, ever, let her have her leg as an excuse."

That means flat-out working harder, because Miranda's prosthetic foot won't bend at the ankle.

She can't point her toe like the other girls, so she's always inventing ways to compensate.

Her ability to adapt and overcome has a way of inspiring her teachers.

"My favorite saying is, 'Talent is work,'" said ballet teacher Dayna Meixell. "And she works every day."

That's inspirational to Miranda's mom.

"Through her grades, and through her dancing, she makes me very proud," Karrie said.

Miranda's disability also provides her with inspiration.

"It's just one of my flaws," she said. "I think it's good for me. It gives me a challenge to work up to. So, it's something I should be grateful for."

E-mail dschechter@wfaa.com

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