A very special man who spent a lifetime making very special shoes for some very special feet recently passed away. For people with disfigured feet, shopping for shoes that would enable them to walk was a near impossibility. Robert Mokros lost his foot at the age of 13 and found out exactly how impossible it was for any of how new classmates to purchase shoes could be. He was sent to a school for children with disabilities after the loss of his foot. There he saw that many of his classmates had disfigured feet but could not buy shoes. In his home country of Germany this could have life threatening effects in winter.
Robert created his very special shoes for people with disfigurements all around the world, and unlike shoe shopping for most of us, he did not even need the foot the shoe was meant for.
Simply looking at an individual’s feet he was able to carve the exact likeness from wood in order to fit the shoe to the foot. He used a few assistive devices such as dye footprints or plaster castings and sometimes just paper tracings or simple sketches. His unique talent permitted thousands of customers to purchase their first pair of shoes. Some his customers were able to walk for the first time in their lives because of his special ability to produce the necessary shoes.
Robert was a pioneer in the shoe industry and his techniques and ideas transformed the medical industry’s outlook on people’s need for prosthetic shoes. While he remained in business almost up until the day he died, his idea were sold to large shoe companies who were able to produce these specialized shoes faster and even a little more attractively.
There are a great number of people who still benefit from Robert’s shoe revolution. Thousands of people every year are in need of prosthetic shoes and are now finally able to do their own form of shoe shopping. These unique shoes assist in their ability to walk and in some cases, allow them to walk when they would have no other form of self mobility.
Very few able bodied people think about the difficulties those with foot disfigurements have in purchasing shoes. Thanks to one man’s unique talent and compassion, he was able to provide the gift of mobility for hundred of thousands of people world wide.