Knoxville + holiday cheer = 20,300 hits

Pasco couple's work ethic, good cheer inspires in holiday season

Mike Long talks to God all the time. He tells you about those conversations, and his chest swells with pride. He has no doubts. His faith is unwavering.

As for being born 55 years ago without legs, he says this: "People wouldn't hear what I have to say if I was able-bodied.''

His birth defect baffled doctors. He learned to walk on artificial legs. He grew up strong and says he has enjoyed better health than his three siblings.

Mike learned to create individual teeth at a lab in Knoxville, Tenn., in 1974, but "I knew in my heart God wanted me to go into some form of the ministry,'' he said. His sister studied at Baptist Bible College in Springfield, Mo., so Mike enrolled.

— Bill Stevens, Pasco Times Editor, December 20, 2009, tampabay.com