Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was born in Wichita Falls and grew up in Duncanville, Texas.
Abbott, 60, received a finance degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a law degree from Vanderbilt University.
At 26, Abbott was paralyzed by a fallen oak tree while he was out jogging and spent a month in the hospital and six weeks in a Houston rehab facility, but turned down experimental treatments that could help him learn to walk again.
“It immediately clicked that if I spent any time trying to be able to walk again, that would be time lost. I never allowed myself to be weighed down by oh gosh, what if I’d done this or that, what if my life would be different? Instead, I cast my eyes forward and moved forward in life instead of constantly looking back.”
He says the incident tested his faith, but his wife, Cecilia, was his support system.
“She was put to the test in sickness and in health,” he said. “It was a challenge she embraced with great support for me and that made our marriage and our relationship even stronger.”
Abbott has worked as a Harris County judge and was appointed by then-Gov. George W. Bush to the Supreme Court of Texas before being elected to Texas attorney general in 2002 and governor in 2014.
“The reason I went to law school to begin with was because I cherished the rule of law in this country and I wanted to make sure it was preserved and passed on,” he said. “I wanted to be a judge myself, so I would do it right.”
Abbott’s campaign spokesperson says, if re-elected, Abbott plans to focus on reining in the growth of property taxes, improving education and cracking down on both human and sex trafficking and criminal street gangs.