Victoria is a 23-year-old TV personality on ESPN and former Paralympic swimmer. She is defying the odds on Dancing with the Stars' 25th season this fall on ABC by performing without having any feeling in her legs.
Victoria relies on her professional partner Val Chmerkovskiy for guidance as well as his emotional and physical support. The contestant has found she must trust Val in order to execute most of the challenging moves in his choreography.
But with each passing week, Victoria is rising to the occasion and proving she's a real contender for the mirrorball trophy this season. Not only is she talented, but she also has an endearing friendship with Val, who seemingly adores her. Curious to learn more about her?
Below is a list of 10 facts Reality TV World has compiled about Victoria Arlen:
- Victoria was born on September 26, 1994 in Boston, Massachusetts, and she was raised in Exeter, New Hampshire.
- Victoria is a triplet and has three brothers total -- L.J., William and Cameron.
- At age 11, the lifelong swimmer and athlete fell ill with transverse myelitis and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, rare conditions that left her in a four-year long coma and without use of her legs for nearly 10 years.
- When Victoria was in a coma, she could hear conversations going on in her hospital room as doctors expressed losing hope for any sort of improvement in her condition. However, with support from her family, the athlete's health improved tremendously.
- In June 2010, Victoria returned to the pool for the first time after recovering and worked towards competing in the Olympic Games. Two years later, she participated in four events at the London Paralympic Games in Spring 2012 and took home one Gold and three Silver medals.
- Victoria is a motivational speaker who lives by the motto: "Face it. Embrace it. Defy it. Conquer it."
- In addition to swimming, she enjoys reading, modeling, acting, fashion, sled hockey, tennis, hanging out with friends and family, movie-making, and community service.
- Victoria has been a keynote speaker at many events, including Disney, Pfizer and Liberty, sharing her story across the country.
- Victoria is a world-record holder in the 100-meter freestyle.
- As a TV personality, Victoria has reported for numerous sports programs -- including X-Games, Invictus Games,The ESPY Awards, Special Olympics World Games, and SportsCenter.