BACK IN THE SADDLE: Students design new prosthetic leg for horse - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

BACK IN THE SADDLE: Students design new prosthetic leg for horseback rider

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Zwingle (KWWL) -

After more than a year of not riding her horse an eastern Iowa woman is back in the saddle, thanks to a group of area students.

More than 20 years ago, a Zwingle woman lost part of her leg during a farming accident and recently she's been having complications while riding. However, engineering students from the University of Iowa created a custom prosthetic leg to solve that problem.

Monna Metcalf felt pure happiness this weekend as she mounted her horse Rebel for the first time in more than a year.

"My heart is pumping, I am very excited," said Monna, Zwingle.

Monna lost her leg in 1994 in a farming accident.

"It caught my pant leg and pulled me down into it the PTO joint and it took part of my foot and I don't remember too much more than that and I ended up in the hospital, the infection was just too much and they had to take the leg," said Monna.

It was after she lost her leg that she found her love for riding, but in the past year Monna hasn't been able to ride Rebel, because of complications.

"When I put my foot in the stirrup the leather will just automatically pull the leg because I can't control it," said Monna. "So it would twist on the leg and then I would get sore from it twisting, so now what the students have came up with is this wonderful thing where my leg will not turn, just the lower part will."

Students from The University of Iowa's College of Engineering dedicated their senior year project to design a new prosthetic leg for Monna so she could comfortably ride Rebel. The students met with Monna's doctors and her prosthetic and tested several prototypes.

"It's so exciting, I loved it, it's really awesome," said Madison Chrisman, engineering student. "It's really hard to believe that we got all this done and we made her really happy, I am so happy."

Monna's daughter, Aulanda Krause, proposed the project to the biomedical engineering students as a way to help her mother regain her freedom.

"She's gotta get back in the saddle again because I've got to get my mom back again," said Krause, Monna's daughter.

The engineering students also made Monna a new ladder she can use to get on Rebel. After a few adjustments Monna's new leg and ladder will be complete. 

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