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Wednesday, January 20 at 9 p.m. – Get Off Your Knees: The John Robinson Story

(Rochester, NY) John Robinson was born a congenital amputee. No hands. His arms stop at his elbow. No knees. His lower legs are attached to his hips. What should have been a life in the shadows became the life of a man who cast a giant shadow despite his 3’9” height.
As part of its annual Dialogue on Disability: The Herman & Margaret Schwartz Community Series, WXXI and Al Sigl Community of Agencies are pleased to present Get off Your Knees: The John Robinson Story, a documentary profiling the compelling life story of this remarkable man. It airs Wednesday, January 20 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV (DT21.1/cable 1011 and 11).

Get Off Your Knees focuses on the foundation built through his education and his continued successes, struggles, and perseverance obtaining a job and building a family. John’s ability to succeed in life remained in question while he was growing up.  When he was born, his parents wondered how he would be able to hold things, write, and feed and dress himself.  Would he go to school?  Would he be able to get a job and support himself?
Despite the challenges he faced at birth, John is living the life of his dreams—he graduated from Syracuse University and has made his way as a successful broadcast salesperson that now holds a high level management position. He has a wife and three children. He drives a car, plays golf, coaches soccer, holds committee positions, has fulfilling personal relationships, and participates in many other activities that even those without his challenges do not pursue, including taking his young son to see his beloved Pittsburgh Steelers win the 2006 Super Bowl in Detroit.  
People with disabilities are the nation’s most vulnerable demographic, and the challenges they face every day can seem overwhelming. The documentary serves as a valuable educational tool for both individuals with disabilities and those without.  It demonstrates how a normal and productive life can be achieved even when faced with challenges and informs the viewer about the sensitivity of issues associated with disabilities.

Dialogue on Disability: The Herman & Margaret Schwartz Community Series, a partnership between WXXI and Al Sigl Community of Agencies, is a week-long outreach initiative designed to stimulate community dialogue about the perspectives and abilities of people with disabilities. At the heart of this initiative is programming broadcast on WXXI-TV and AM 1370 that celebrates the amazing lives of people with disabilities. Dialogue on Disability runs January 18-24. Dialogue on Disability is made possible thanks to support from the Fred L. Emerson Foundation.


WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.