Photo by Dennis Wolf

In 1960, when she was 10 years old, Jackie Van Duzee, of St. Paul, Minn., began to notice at recess that it was becoming harder to exercise. The last one picked for teams, she began using her mind instead of her feet to make it through the bases: keeping an eagle eye on the kid with the ball so she could steal the next base when he looked away.

Heading into seventh grade, she was diagnosed with scoliosis and fascioscapularhumeral muscular dystrophy, a progressive, degener