The Guinness World Records Hall of Fame just got more inclusive. Four of its newly recognized achievers just so happen to be members of the disability community. For the 2023 induction class, Guinness World Records chose “space” as the theme because, when it comes to these inspiring achievers, the sky is the limit!
Meet the Inclusive Class: 2023 Guinness World Records Hall of Fame Inductees
Max Park: Speedcubing Champion
There are several different therapeutic methods that benefit children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), such as applied behavior analysis (ABA), cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), equestrian therapy and play therapy, to name a few. For Max Park, a California resident with ASD, a brain-boosting form of play therapy – and specifically speedcubing – was (and continues to be) a game changer!
Max’s parents, Schwan and Miki Park, initially introduced their son to a Rubik’s Cube, an iconic toy, to help strengthen his fine motor skills and socialization skills. It didn’t take long to see that Max quickly mastered square puzzling.
For years now, Max has earned top ranks at countless speedcubing competitions thanks to his fast problem-solving skills. Kudos to Max for skillfully playing his way into the Guinness World Records Hall of Fame.
Ellie Simmonds: Youngest Recipient of an MBE
Born with achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism, Ellie Simmonds (pictured above in header image) plunged into swimming early on, achieving elite status by her early teenage years. She became the youngest British athlete to compete at the 2008 Summer Paralympics, was named BBC’s Young Sports Personality of the Year and became the youngest recipient ever of a Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her “services to disabled sport.” She was then elevated to Officer of the Order of the British Empire.
During her gold medal winning career, Ellie made a splash at three Paralympic games (London 2012, Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020) and several world championships. Beyond the pool, she’s taken to the dance floor to compete in Strictly Come Dancing, and supported efforts for both the Dwarf Sports Association UK and WaterAid. Kudos to Ellie!
David Aguilar: Creator of World’s First Functional LEGO Prosthetic Arm
Spaceships, trains, buildings, monsters, robots… the imagination of a LEGO builder can create spectacular things. David “Hand Solo” Aguilar, who has loved the classic bricks from a young age, is the brainchild of perhaps the most colorful prosthesis.
David is super handy with LEGO blocks, even though was born with Poland Syndrome, a congenital condition that caused his right forearm to be underdeveloped. Still a teenager at the time, David created the world’s first functional LEGO prosthetic arm! So, David is basically a real-life Tony Stark, right?! This creative inventor is also a student, inclusion advocate and writer. Expect more innovation from this Hall of Famer!
Rumeysa Gelgi: World’s Tallest Woman
Standing at 7 feet 0.7 inches, Rumeysa Gelgi is most recognized as the tallest living woman. But she takes top ranks for several other records too, including:
- Longest finger on a living female: 4.40 inches
- Largest hands on a living female: her right hand measures 9.81 inches and her left hand measures 9.55 inches
- Longest back on a living female: 23.58 inches
Rumeysa says her record-breaking height is due to Weaver Syndrome, a rare genetic condition that causes bone growth. She considers herself to be a positive person striving to inspire and empower others.
The 2023 Guinness World Records Hall of Fame induction class included four more people:
- Beyoncé Knowles: This singer holds the record for most BET Awards won by an individual, with 32 BET awards achieved between 2001 and 2021.
- Wally Funk: At 82, she became the oldest person to fly to space!
- Cristiano Ronaldo: This soccer star is celebrated for achieving for the most goals scored (by a male player) in international soccer matches. He’s also the first male player to have scored in five different World Cups, and the first person to have rack up 500 million followers on Instagram.
- Lucky Diamond Rich: Inked from head to toe, Lucky is the most tattooed man alive.
Interested in setting a record? You can apply line at GuinnessWorldrecords.com.