CONCORD, MA (CBS) - It's not hard to pick out Nico Calabria jogging with his varsity soccer teammates at Concord-Carlisle High School outside Boston. He is, and always has been, the kid with one leg.
What's hard to do when watching Nico is to believe what you're seeing. He says, "My disability doesn't define who I am. My disability gives me a challenge every day."
Born without a right leg and hip, Nico was raised by parents whose only expectation for their son was that he not expect any special treatment. Nico says, "There's no 'you're not taking out the garbage', you're doing everything that every other kid in the family is doing."
He was just five when he decided that a traditional prosthetic leg was simply holding him back. Nico says, "You can go the option of forearm crutches which are, they make you stick out heinously, but they also give you this opportunity to be as mobile and as free as I wanna be because I can play soccer on my crutches, I can run, I can climb Kilimanjaro."
That's right, he said Kilimanjaro. At 13, Nico became the first one-legged climber to reach the top of Africa's highest mountain. He skis, dives, and loves volleyball.
Then there's wrestling, against two legged opponents. He finished third in the state in his weight class. But it was this moment on the soccer field that's provided a much bigger audience for Nico.
Two weeks ago, he scored his first varsity goal. With more than a million YouTube hits, it might be the most famous high school soccer goal ever. Nico says, "I don't think it was my teammates thinking Nico has one leg and he just scored a goal on varsity, it was more like that was a nice goal. No pity. No differences. I just want to be seen as an equal."
NIco pads his crutches for safety. The state athletic association ruled he could use them citing the American with Disabilities Act. He is quick to push back against anyone who suggests playing with crutches gives him some kind of competitive advantage. He says, "I suggest they try it and then tell me if they think it's an advantage or not and then we can go from there."
This past summer Nico made his debut for the U.S. amputee soccer team and now wants to take them to their World Cup. He says, "I've got one leg, you get one life, do what you will and I'm not gonna let the hand I was dealt in life dictate what my life is gonna be."
NIco Calabria is living proof that sometimes a picture's worth a lot more than a thousand words, even if it leaves you speechless.