Pope Francis has sent a letter to ex-Formula One driver and Paralympic champion, Alex Zanardi, said CNN.
He remains in intensive care after suffering from a cycling accident last Friday.
Zanardi, 53, lost control of his handbike while competing in a relay race in Tuscany, Italy.
He had lost both his legs after a motor racing accident almost 20 years ago,
In the hand-written letter published by Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, Pope Francis praised Zanardi.
The Pope said he is living his life to the fullest and for providing a “lesson in humanity.”
What Did The Pope Write?
In his handwritten letter the Pope wrote:
“Your story is an example of how to start again after a sudden halt.
Through sport you have demonstrated how to live life as protagonists, making disability a lesson in humanity.
“Thank you for giving strength to those who had lost it.
“In this painful moment I am close to you.
“I pray for you and your family. May the Lord bless you and Our Lady keep you.”
Following the accident last Friday, Zanardi was airlifted to the Santa Maria alle Scotte hospital in Siena.
There he underwent three hours of emergency neurological surgery for facial head injuries.
The hospital said Zanardi’s condition had remained “stationary” after his fifth night since the crash.
Hospital statement said: “The patient is always sedated, intubated and mechanically ventilated and the prognosis remains confidential.”
His Past Exploits
Zanardi had both legs amputated above the knee.
This is after the horrific crash at the Lausitzring in Germany on September 15, 2001.
During his recovery, Zanardi designed his own prosthetics.
Zanardi then learned to walk again.
Then he turned his attention to hand cycling.
Where he had won four gold medals and two silvers at the 2012 and 2016 Paralympics.
He had also competed in the New York City Marathon and set an Ironman record in his class.