By Adam Bates
“We’d make jokes about it,” says Jon Comer. Not many of us would find losing a foot at the age of seven and having to deal with a prosthesis something to laugh about, but Jon says, “For me it was normal.”
When Jon, a native of Dallas, Texas, was only four, he was hit by a car, which ran over his foot three times (I know, you think that stuff only happens in bad movies—but as they say, “Life is crazier than fiction.”) and eventually the doctors couldn’t do anything but amputate his foot.
“Everyone was really cool about it,” he says, “When I was a kid they didn’t really notice because of the type of prosthesis I had, it was hard to tell.” So, like most other 12-year-olds, Jon jumped on his board and decided to become a pro. “It was something I just knew I wanted to do. I pretty much made myself believe that I would be a pro someday,” he says. Practicing every day, eventually Jon achieved what he had set out to do and went pro at 21.
Despite an obvious twist to Jon’s physical build he never felt that he had to do things the hard way or that things were tougher for him. “I don’t think there were any big obstacles for me to overcome, there’s just been a lot of small things along the way,” he says, “I don’t know if it was more difficult for me than everyone else because it’s the only way I’ve ever done it.”
Well, whatever he’s doing, it’s working. Jon, who calls Oceanside, California home, is now sponsored by RipZone Clothing, Powell Skateboards, Fast Forward Skate Shop and Independent Trucks. But for Jon, being able to ride his skateboard is all he ever wanted to do. “I didn’t want to be a pro because they make lots of money, I wanted to be a pro so I could ride my skateboard and travel to different places,” he says. So far he’s been able to check Japan, South Africa, Brazil, Canada, Australia and much of Europe off of his list.
Jon now tours with the Warp Tour, and when he’s not on his board he’s usually playing video games, reading or riding his bike. Although everything seems to be working out all right, when the “small” things do come up he says, “‘This sucks!’ but I just deal with it and get through it.”
And to those who feel life is unfair and nothing is going their way, he says, “Crap happens. Get over it.”
Bands: Flaming Lips and Bright Eyes
Video Games: GTA: Vice City, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4
Movie: The Big Lebowski
Saying: “Skate for fun!”
Look for Jon’s life story in a new documentary called Never Been Done.