WATCH: Mark Hamill cheers on young Star Wars fan with ‘R2-D2’ bionic arm
An 11-year-old Star Wars fan has received a bionic arm designed after the galaxy’s favorite droid, R2-D2, and she even got a call from none other than Luke Skywalker.
Bella Tadlock got the advanced multi-grip bionic limb called the “Hero Arm” from United Kingdom-based company Open Bionics, which is focused on making “next-generation bionic limbs and turning disabilities into superpowers.”
Tadlock, who lives in Florida, United States, was born without fingers on her right hand while her left arm was shorter than her right, as per The Independent yesterday, March 4.
She has received numerous surgeries and now has three fingers and a thumb on her right, but opted for a non-surgical solution for her left arm, according to the report.
She was able to raise $14,000 (over P708,000) late last year to cover the cost of her very own R2-D2 “Hero Arm” and has gotten the attention and support of Mark Hamill since then.
Hamill took the time to show his appreciation to the young fan via video call. The beautiful moment was captured and shared with fans by Open Bionics on YouTube last Monday, March 2.
“You know I heard your story on Twitter, and just this morning my daughter Chelsea was showing me the video of you with your R2-D2 arm,” Hamill told the young fan.
Tadlock then showed Hamill the bionic limb, which prompted him to react in awe: “Oh, man! That is fantastic! Wow.”
The 11-year-old also demonstrated how she can grab and grip objects with the arm, much to the amazement of the Luke Skywalker actor.
“I heard you’re a Star Wars fan but I have to tell you, I’m a big fan of yours,” Hamill stressed. “I’m so proud of you. I’m so happy that you were able to have this happen for you.”
“They call it a ‘Hero Arm’ because you really are a hero,” he added. “It was great meeting you and give my best to your whole family. May the Force be with you always.”
The doting mother, Pamela, said her daughter looks up to Luke Skywalker as the superhero lost an arm and was adopted, just like Tadlock.
Open Bionics, which has a partnership with Disney, also offers other designs based on Star Wars, Marvel and Frozen franchises.
The “Hero Arm” is the world’s first clinically approved 3D-printed bionic arm, according to Open Bionics. It has multi-grip functionality and engineered in Bristol, U.K. This lightweight, myoelectric prosthesis is currently available only in the United States, U.K. and France for below-elbow amputee adults and children aged 8 years old and above. Ian Biong/JB
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.