Fearless photographer recounts battling back from childhood shooting in powerful short film


posted Monday, October 1, 2012 at 4:49 PM EDT


If you ever wondered about the transformative power of photography, you should watch this moving short film by Mike Allebach called "Fearless Jaleel King: Against All Odds."

When King was just eight years old, he almost died when an angry neighbor shot him with a sawed-off shotgun. When King woke up in the hospital three days after the shooting, he was paralyzed from the waist down.

King has been virtually wheelchair-bound ever since but that didn't prevent him from eventually pursuing his dream to become a professional photographer.

As King learned, being a photographer gave him back some of the freedom he had lost after the attack. Based in Philadelphia, King specializes in wedding photography but also shoots fashion and events.

"I never thought that I'd be a wedding photographer…because I thought it was always going to be something," he says in the film. "And when I got over that something…whether it was somebody standing up and getting in my way, it made things a lot easier on me. Somebody [told] me: 'Hey you're the photographer, so you can go wherever you want.' I can go wherever I want??? No matter how hard it may seem, there's always a silver lining in every cloud."