This was an exciting day for Chase and his family! They worked diligently to raise funds for the purchase of a wheelchair accessible vehicle which would allow them to transport Chase safely and easily. A grant from The National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility provided them with the remaining funds they needed to achieve their goal of mobility freedom. Thank you to Cassy Churchill and Andy Parker with M.C. Mobility Systems in Evendale, OH who assisted this family in selecting a wheelchair accessible vehicle to best meet their needs. This minivan with a VMI Northstar conversion will allow Chase to embark on many exciting journeys this summer! His family wrote the letter below sharing with us the challenges they no longer have to face and the freedom they can now experience:
It all began October 31, 2014. I was carrying Chase, our 10 year old little boy, into my SUV. Our normal routine was to place him up into his large special needs car seat, however this time we didn’t quite make it. As we crossed our deck, and me being a bit of a klutz, somehow I managed to slip on the garden hose and down we went, thankfully Chase fully ready for Halloween and trick-or-treating laughed as we hit the deck. My right hip took most of the fall, thankfully. Being a mom, and wanting to protect him, I managed in the split seconds to fall in a manner that prevented him from being injured. He laughed out loud and this confirmed to me and everyone else that the fall didn’t warrant a trip to the ER for X-rays and that nothing was broken (Chase still laughs when it’s mentioned). I believe this was the day that we decided something must be done! My back and Chase’s ever increasing size coupled by the breaking down of his wheelchair each time we wanted to travel kept us inside and this just wasn’t fair. He loved getting out doing things but keeping him and myself safe was a priority now, another fall could be devastating to him, or me, or both.
Embarking on the journey for the accessible van for Chase has been the most amazing journey thus far! It has built memories, beautiful friendships that will last forever, hope, awareness, and independence for not only Chase but our entire family. I’m sure The National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility realizes the impact it has to help give independence to individuals and it’s so much more than just financial. I can try to say in words how thankful we are but I also want to show you. Giving a child/adult and/or their family the ability to live easier without stressing about unnecessary worries like transportation safety, takes a huge weight off of our shoulders. We no longer dread going to the grocery store, to the park, or to a family member’s birthday party! These things may not all be fun all the time but are necessary to live a good quality of life, and just being a part of the community. I can’t tell you enough how lonely it is at times being a special needs parent and a special needs child. However now we can get out into the community, Chase can now play on the Miracle Baseball League which he loves! He recently went to Kings Island, another favorite, and the entire family went which was another first.
Chase has 3 siblings so all of us going places together has been a huge challenge. Thanks to The National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility, we can now all go places together! I can now take him grocery shopping with me (he always get a prize before we leave), we are planning a family mini vacation with his new van and Chase is so excited! He loves exploring new places, and now we can safely do this. This entire experience has been amazing and unforgettable and not possible without you. So we are sending you all of our love and a huge Thank You from the bottom of our hearts for being heroes to our little hero!
Chase, John, Amanda, Little John, Alexis and Elyse