Breona's Wheels

So, this is a first for  my brother in-law Jeff Van Horne and his family. They are a private family and don't often ask for help. Instead, they  dig in and do the work of life independently, no matter what.   I want to thank them for letting me put this out there in the world.

When we visited Chatham, Ontario,  from Nova Scotia a  few weeks ago, my husband Morgan and his brother Jeff and sister- in-law  Lucy, were checking  a lottery ticket. While it wasn't a winner, the question was asked, "what if?" The answer from both Jeff and Lucy was a wheel chair accessible van for Breona. The answer wasn't a surprise for Morgan and I, because we have learned, over the past 12 years, that it is possible to be witness to true selflessness. This is Breona's story. 

Breona was born January 2006, she is 12 years old. When Breona was 2 months old, she was tragically assaulted by a babysitter, who subsequently went to jail. The assault left Breona with permanent brain damage, cerebral palsy and she will be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life. This is the beginning of Breona's story. 

Breona's grandparents, Jeff and Lucy, with the help of Breona's Dad Brent,  started taking care of her as soon as she was able to be released from hospital at 3 months. Jeff and Lucy  secured full custody of her when she was 2 years old.  This was the next part of her story. 

Over the past 12 years of her life, Breona has challenged all of our thinking about the notion of "ability". While she can't walk and requires the 24/7 care of her grandparents and her Dad, she is a relentless force in her optimism, her contagious laughter and in her ability to introduce those around her into the everyday opportunities for joy. Sitting with her minutes before we were heading  back home to the Maritimes she said to me, "Would you like to hear me sing a song?"  Of course the answer was yes, and she belted it out, especially the lyric "Superman has nothing on me".  We all agree. 

So family, friends and those that find their way to this post, may I humbly ask you to consider adding  to the next part of Breona's story? The one that helps she and her grandparents have the wheels to add to their journey,  who knows where this  superwoman can go from here?

Thank you, 
AKA: Breona's super proud Aunt
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Debbie Van Horne 
Dartmouth, NS
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