Malcolm Lesavoy and Cliff Meidl

Thank you Malcolm Lesavoy and Cliff Meidl for joining me on The Born To Talk Radio Show Podcast.


Malcolm Lesavoy is not only an accomplished reconstructive and plastic surgeon but also was the Chief of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance and simultaneously a professor at the UCLA School of Medicine for 23 years.  Malcolm is currently in private practice in Beverly Hills, CA and remains a Clinical Professor at UCLA’s School of Medicine.







Cliff Meidl.  In 1986 while working on a construction site, Cliff jackhammered into three buried power lines.  Beyond the 300,000 volts of electricty that raced through his body, his heart stopped and his knee bones and muscles in both legs more mostly disintegrated. Thanks to the skillful operation, from Malcolm Lesavoy, he was able to save both legs, that were scheduled from a previous doctor after the accident, for bi-lateral above the knee amputations.




Today, Cliff is a retired American sprint kayaker.  A motivational speaker who regularly speaks on the need for on-the-job safety procedures. Plus, thanks to Malcolm Lesavoy, Cliff competed in 1000 meter kayak events, at the 1996 and 2000 Summer Olympics. He was honored as the U.S. flag bearer at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Syndey, Australia.

Their Takeaways.


Malcom Lesavoy is a humble man.  “I feel that our story basically is that of Cliff, is the real hero. My role happened to enable him to persevere after his severe trauma to both legs and our successful surgical reconstruction.”

“It is a story of inspiration and guts to overcome severe trauma and functional deformity allowing for athletic excellence for him to be a two time Olympian. The story subsequently transforms into a true long lasting friendship of doctor/patient relationship.”

“As time has progressed, Cliff became a National spokesman for safety construction and my practice, at the stage of my career, now emphasizes aesthetic surgery in Beverly Hills.”

“We will all face adversity sometime in our lives.  It’s like death and taxes. It will happen.   But one of the most important parts of adversity is that we face it head on no matter how difficult and impossible it may seem.  Sometimes our greatest strengths emerge during times of uncertainty.  Be your best and believe in yourself… Adversity is a management process- learn how to manage failure and get back up when knocked down, navigate around obstacles and springboard to further success.”


“One of our greatest gifts is the ability to give back-pay it forward to others.  Fostering a culture of mentorship and belonging is a critical part of how we grow and become our own greatness.”

“Use the tools that you have and don’t worry about what you don’t have.  Having a clear path through visualization is an important part of accomplishing goals.  Discovering your abilities, developing your personal patterns of success and having a  great support system such as family, friends and mentors  creates that pathway to accomplish the extraordinary.”

“This was one of the most important parts of me getting through my accident. Dr. Lesavoy played a massive part in my life.  From saving my legs to being that major supporter.  And at the same time inspiring me to break through my adversity and fostering a great friendship.  Also,  my parents played a huge part as well by “driving the bus” when I was not able to make decisions. Later after my accident, my brother inspired me to recognize my abilities and pursue canoeing.”

In Closing.

I enjoyed speaking with both Malcolm and Cliff prior to our podcast.  Fair warning, while this podcast has some serious questions, you will feel the admiration and a true friendship they have continued through the years. They bounce off of each other with humor and devotion!


Tune in to hear their amazing stories!!!

Conversations + Connections = Community

Making the world a better place.  One Story at a time. 

What’s Your Story? I want to share it!