NM0812_joshIt’s not often a quad is seen rolling the halls of the U.S. Congress — in protest maybe, or for a special event — but Josh Basile, a C4-5 quad, became a regular on Capitol Hill this past spring when he had the opportunity to work with one of the biggest supporters of disability legislation in the U.S. Senate, Sen. Tom Harkin — a Democrat from Iowa who has been a champion of disability rights since winning his first term in 1985.

Basile’s journey — from breaking his neck in 2004 after being tossed by a wave to working alongside some of the most powerful people in the U.S. government at the age of 26 — was no small feat. But even more impressive is the transformation, or re-working, rather, of his original life plans.

Growing up in Montgomery County, Md., Basile had one of those idyllic childhoods. “My childhood was filled with sports, girls, and a little studying in between,” he jokes. He fell in love with tennis and went to play for the Skidmore College tennis team, a AAA-tier school in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., after graduating from high school.

He thrived on living life to the nth degree when in school. “I was very active, always on the move, didn’t like to stay still.” After Basile’s injury while on summer vacation with family at Beth