Help my Hero

My Dad, my hero...

15 years ago, our lives were changed forever when my Dad suffered a stroke and was left with a condition called Locked-in-Syndrome. As the name suggests, he's been left a prisoner in his own body, unable to move or speak, communicating through a combination of blinking and lip reading methods. Even though he is so limited physically, he is completely aware of everything and everybody around him and remains the person he was inside before he had the stroke.


Despite all the challenges and frustrations that my Dad faces every minute of every day, I have never heard him complain about his condition. And that is why he is my hero. He has shown such inner strength, amazing humour, and courage and I am so, so proud of the way he faces his challenges every day. He still manages to make me laugh every time I see him "“ a real trooper. He loves his football (Manchester City in particular!), still manages to enjoy a good beer and has a mind for technology. But above all, he has a kind heart and inspires everybody he meets.


So, with my Dad's bravery and determination in mind, I have set myself two, 2-wheeled challenges in this Olympic year, 2012.


The first challenge involves cycling from London to Paris over the Jubilee weekend (June 2nd "“ 4th) accompanied by some cycling companions. We will be covering an average distance of 70 miles per day for 4 days, with the Eiffel Tower getting ever closer with each stroke of the pedal (hopefully!).


The second challenge (October 2012) involves a cycle trip slightly further a field "“ in Nepal! I will be taking to the road on two wheels for a total of 15 days, covering 445 miles of Nepali roads. Negotiating sand and dirt tracks, mountain passes and tropical plains I will be climbing through traditional villages towards the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas - quite the challenge!


Why??! I hear you cry! Well:I would like to take on these challenges to raise money for a device called 'Head Mouse Technology' which is a reliable and accurate, hands-free mouse control  alternative that allows complete control of a computer by naturally moving the head. This method of computer access will be far more efficient and much less frustrating for my Dad, allowing him to communicate by text and email far more easily than he is currently able to. There are many different models available but to give you an insight, follow this link for an example -


Most of these models start at about £500 so any extra money that is raised, Dad and I would like to donate to the charity Fighting Strokes ( which supports people living with Locked-in-Syndrome.


So dig deep, just like my Dad does every day and help us to make his life a little easier.


Thank you,





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Joanne Bradley 
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