PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Kevin Carroll has worked with thousands of amputees here in Maine and across the country helping restore their mobility and independence. But what this prosethetist is best known for is designing a new tail for an injured dolphin. The amazing story will soon come to life on the silver screen.
It's a story that has touched so many people. a baby dolphin badly entangled in a crab trap line is rescued off the coast of Florida. 'Winter' as she was called was taken to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Her life was spared, but not her tail. Kevin Carroll heard the story on the radio. 'We put prosthetics on people...why not put a prosthetic on a dolphin? said Carroll.
Carroll spent more than 30 years fitting amputees with prosthetics. He and his partner work for Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics, which has clinics across the country including Maine. Carroll tells us to help Winter, they created a new product called Winter Gel. The gel is shaped like a sleeve, it is rolled onto her body which keeps the prosthetic tail in place.
"It almost adheres to her skin, but yet it is easy to remove. Over the gel we put the prosthetic and over that we have another sealing gel and it locks the prosthetic into place,' said Carroll. It took Carroll and his team a year and half to develop the gel for winter. Since then it is being manufactured in all different sizes and consistencies for patients for who have had a limb amputated.
Winter's spine had been deteriorating. since being fitted with a new tail four years ago she has completely healed.
Her incredible story of survival has captured Hollywood --inspiring the movie 'Dolphin Tale'. The movie which stars Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd and Harry Connick jr opens nationwide September 23rd.