Inaugural LB Next Gen Event
September 18, 2014 at Unici Casa
Our Inaugural Looking Beyond Next Generation Event was held on September 18th, 2014 at Unici Casa. We honored Nick Ekbatani as the inaugural honoree. Nick personifies the human spirit's capacity. In 2012, he lost his left leg when a taxi driver made an unfortunate illegal left turn. Doctors did not believe he would make it. But, not only did Nick make it, he survived with a new sense of purpose: to inspire life in those around him.
As a star for the UCLA Football team, Nick Ekbatani battled various teams and opponents across the country for the Bruins during his four year tenure as a UCLA Student-Athlete. However, no foe he had previously faced would be as formidable as the the one that awaited him in Redondo Beach, CA the night of July 14th, 2012. While leisurely riding his motorcycle, a speeding taxi-van collided with Ekbatani's left side. The collision nearly killed him, as doctors gave the young man a 10% chance of survival. Fortunately, Ekbatani's stubborn will wouldn't give in to death that fateful night.
Unfortunately, the catastrophic auto accident would ultimately result in the amputation of his left leg. Since first awaking from a coma in the hospital, Ekbatani has vowed to remain relentlessly positive, no matter the severity of the predicament he now finds himself in. The amputation was just the beginning of a series of battles Ekbatani has had to persevere, as he has endured 12 surgeries since July 2012 while battling a deep bone infection in his completely rebuilt femur.
The battle ensues and he has a long road to recovery remaining, yet he remains ambitious and relentless in his pursuits - not letting anything stop him. Currently, on top of relearning how to walk on a prosthetic, Ekbatani is an MBA candidate at The Marshall School of Business at USC on a Swim With Mike Scholarship. Moreover, he is in pursuit of a second Bachelor of Arts, in Music & Vocal Performance at The Los Angeles College of Music in Pasadena.
When Ekbatani isn't rigorously studying, he enjoys performing music, running on his new Össur Flex-Run running blade, and trying his best to positively contribute to this world by public speaking, mentoring youth, and fund-raising for various organizations, such as The Challenged Athletes Foundation, that make major impacts on the lives of those in predicaments similar to his.