Tuesday, March 25, 2008

World's Tallest Man Struggles to Fit In

Leonid Stadnik's phenomenal height has forced him to quit his job get different means of getting around and to stoop around his house.

But Stadnik, who Guinness World Records says is the world's tallest human, says his condition has also taught him that there are many kindhearted strangers.Ukrainian veterinarian, Leonid Stadnik, 2.59 meter (8,5 feet) tall, the world's tallest living man according to the Guinness Book of Records, rides a bicycle specially made for him, in the village of Podoliantsy, Ukraine's northwestern Zhytomyr region, 212 kilometers (131.74 miles) west of the capital Kiev, Sunday, March 23, 2008.

World's Tallest Man Is Riding High

Stadnik's growth spurt started at age 14 after a brain operation apparently stimulated his pituitary gland. Stadnik, 37, is still growing up.Since his recognition by Ukrainian record keepers four years ago, and by Guinness last year, people from all over Ukraine and the world have sent him outsized clothing, provided his home with running water and recently presented him with a giant bicycle. And on Monday, he got a new car, courtesy of President Viktor Yushchenko.

Yesterday, he traveled to Kiev to get a new, shiny-blue car. Stadnik struggled to squeeze himself into the passenger's seat, his knees nearly reaching up to his face. Yushchenko then briefly took the beaming Stadnik for a drive.

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