Elliot Mujaji was a member of Zimbabwe's national athletics team and qualified to compete at the 1998 Commonwealth Games, when he suffered severe burns in an electrical accident. His right arm was amputated, and he remained in a coma for two months. He came back to athletics, and won the first ever Paralympic gold for his country.
Oscar Pistorius —
South Africa's "Blade Runner" Oscar Pistorius made history at London 2012 by becoming the first double amputee to compete on the track and make an Olympic final. He is the favorite in the Paralympics 100 meters run.
Henry Wanyoike —
In 1995, while training to become a professional runner, Henry Wanyoike became almost completely blind after suffering a stroke. He got back to competing, and became one of the fastest men on the planet. He holds two world records in 5,000 meters, 10,000 meters and the record time for marathon.
Achmat Hassiem —
Achmat Hassiem lost his foot to a Great White shark when participating in a lifeguard training session in 2006. After an amazing recovery, he qualified for the 2008 Beijing Paralympics and has been competing ever since. Inset picture: Hassiem shows off a fragment of a shark's tooth that was stuck in his leg after he was attacked.
Natalie Du Toit —
South African Natalie Du Toit lost her left leg when she was hit by a car as a young promising swimmer. She kept training and, besides winning five gold medals in Beijing Paralympics, she qualified for Beijing Olympics 10 km swimming race, finishing 16th. She recently announced London will be her last major competition.
Metwaly Mathana —
The star of Egyptian powerlifting, Metwaly Mathana started the sport at the age of 5. According to his bio with the Egyptian Paralympic committee, he had to leave his village as there was not enough steel for him to keep lifting. He won three gold medals in three consecutive Games.
Somaya Bousaid —
Tunisia's Somaya Bousaid won two gold medals in Beijing 2008 Games -- and became one of the most successful athletes from her country. She was born blind and competes in the category of visually-impaired athletes.
Roxy Burns —
Cyclist Roxy Burns, a South African cerebral palsy sufferer, made her Paralympic debut in Beijing in 2008. As an 18-year-old, she finished sixth in the 500 meters track time trial. Her results have been improving since Beijing and she is one of the favorites for a medal.
Tesfalem Gebru Kebede —
Tesfalem Gebru Kebede won a bronze medal in last year's world championship and is one of Ethiopia's top athletes. He lost his hand when his house was bombed during the Ethio-Eritrea war.