Henryville mom who lost her legs headed to Washington


by Claudia Coffey


Posted on June 27, 2012 at 9:18 PM

Updated Thursday, Jun 28 at 6:01 PM

(WHAS11) -- Stephanie Decker, known for her courageous story of protecting her kids during the Henryville tornado, has possibly her most anticipated meeting ever on Friday at the White House.

It all started with a handwritten note from President Obama wishing Stephanie Decker and her family the best in her recovery.  Decker clearly remembers that night two months ago when she opened it.

"You could hear me scream a mile from the house," said Decker.  "Joe was outside he thought something was wrong. The kids were asleep . And he came running and said what are you yelling at?  And I'm like come look at this. And it's a letter from Mr President. He gave us his personal phone numbers and emails and everything and he said call me."

So, Decker called the President and he answered. She even spoke to the First Lady.  The call ended with a personal invite to the White House.

"Did you think he was serious?"

"I was banking on it," said Decker.  "It was my plan. He gave me the invitation, so I was going."

On Thursday, Decker did some last minute work at Kentucky Prosthetics.

Decker's legs were amputated after injuries she sustained protecting her children during the Henryville tornadoes. She now has both prosthetic limbs and is even walking. For a mom that's overcome so much, she says she's not nervous about meeting the President

"Excited. I'm humbled. Whether you agree with how President Obama is running this country, it is still an honor to go and meet the President of the United States," said Decker.

She plans to talk to the President about advances in prosthetics and making sure all amputees have access to the same kind of technology that she received.

But legislative agendas and photo ops aside, Decker  and her family plan to make this a moment that none of them forget.

"It's going to mean a lot for my kids. My son especially. He gets it. He understands how special this is. Cause the odds of us any of us going to meet the President usually are not very big . We just don't get that opportunity every day," said Decker.