Aileen did not allow her injury to get in the way of her dreams and goals. She was able to pursue and maintain an active lifestyle that included school, work, travel and other activities. She graduated from UC Davis, then moved to Miami to take part in the Miami Project's rehab program and she now rides a specially designed stationary bike everyday. Later, she moved to Arizona, and began a physical therapy program where she can stand again, using a standing frame. So much of this freedom and independence was due to her customized, modified, handicap van.
However, 3 years ago, in a split second, her independence was taken away….again. As Aileen veered off of the road to avoid an accident she ended up at the bottom of a ravine where her van caught fire and exploded. The 911 call was a haunting plea for help as she was trapped in the burning van, with her service dog, Riley, with no way out. Fortunately, the rescue team reached Aileen just in time and pulled her from the fire. She survived, but the vehicle that helped maintain her freedom did not.
For the last 3 years the road back to independence has been a struggle. Without her van, it has been a challenge to maintain her physical therapy, work and other activities. A new, modified van is costly. Each van is customized for the individual’s needs, strengths, height, type of wheelchair etc. The estimated cost for equipment, including the Scott Driving System, Ford Econoline van, lift and driver’s training is $150,000.
With your support, we can get Aileen back on the road to independence. Thank you.
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