Igor Vovkivinskiy of Rochester, Minnesota is 7 feet, 8 inches tall. Naturally, a man that size would have some pretty big feet — size 26 if you’re wondering — and shoes his size aren’t exactly available at Payless and Footlocker.
Additionally, because being a man of his stature is hard on his feet, he’s had 15 foot surgeries in the last three years. So, because of the size and pressure his feet are under, Igor, who’s originally from the Ukraine, requires custom made shoes. Those, as you might imagine, are not cheap. Thankfully, the internet is coming to his rescue via a website taking donations for an Igor shoe fund: Igor Needs Shoes.
Vovkivinskiy, who came to the U.S. from the Ukraine when he was a child, needs size 26 shoes. When he contacted Reebok, they told him it would cost $15,000 to have shoes specially made for him, money not in the budget for this college student.
With the encouragement of his friends, he started a web page and started collecting donations. Since WCCO’s story aired on Monday, he now has over $25,000 in donations and counting.
You’d think that a shoe company like Reebok — or any of the others for that matter — could make this guy some shoes in exchange for making him the centerpiece of a “viral ad.” A man Igor’s size is inherently fascinating — the whole internet would watch a mini-doc on him, I’m sure. Regardless, well done, Internet!
Here’s the original story that ran on Igor’s local CBS affiliate on Monday…