Leonid Stadnik’s phenomenal height has forced him to quit a job he loved and to stoop as he moves around his house. He is 8 feet, five inches tall.
“Thanks to good people I have shoes and clothes,” said the 37-year-old former veterinarian, who still lives with his 66-year-old mother. In 2006, Stadnik was officially measured at 8 feet 5 inches tall, surpassing a 7-foot-9-inch Chinese man to claim the title of the world’s tallest person.
Stadnik’s stature has brought attention, but he struggles to lead a normal life. All the doorways in his one-story brick house are too short for him to pass through without stooping. His 440 pounds cause constant knee pain and often force him to use crutches.
Stadnik loves animals, but had to quit his job as a veterinarian at a cattle farm after suffering frostbite when he walked to work in his socks in winter. He could not afford custom made shoes for his 17-inch feet.
Stadnik says his dream is finding a soul mate, just like the former titleholder, China’s Bao Xishun, who was married last year.
“I think the future holds that for me,” he said.
Leonid Stadnik displaced Bao Xishun as the world’s tallest man. Xishun, 7 feet 9 inches, married in his girlfriend Xia Shujuan, who’s just 5 foot 6 inches tall.