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Chrysler gives van to “local hero”

by David Zatz on

In April 2010, a devastating snowboarding accident left Victoria, B.C.’s Jeff Scott with fractured vertebrae, a quadriplegic who could not even breathe on his own.

A year later, after surgeries, medical treatments, and physical therapy, Scott regained partial use of his arms and wrists. A newfound quest for independence and a long-established sense of adventure saw him and a support team pile into a van for a cross-Canada drive after rehab.

On that adventure, Scott was inspired to start the Live It Love It Foundation (LILI), which provides adaptive outdoor adventures to individuals with disabilities. LILI camps provide opportunities to go rock climbing, kayaking, hand cycling, zip lining, gliding and bungee jumping, at no cost to the participants.

handicapped mobility minivan

Scott was named one of three “Local Heroes” for 2013 by the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA). Today, Chrysler gave him the keys to a specially-modified 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan, which Scott will use to further the Live It Love It Foundation.

“It is hard to put into words just how liberating a new reliable vehicle will be,” Scott said. “I look forward to all the opportunities this van will help create in allowing me to connect with more individuals, helping me spread an attitude of gratitude. Thank you all for the incredibly steadfast support and encouragement!”

Chrysler Group LLC is a major supporter of May’s National Mobility Awareness Month. The 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan has been specially modified with features like hand driving controls, low resistance steering and wheelchair side-entry by specialized companies like BraunAbility and Canada’s Shopper’s Home Healthcare, which hosted the key hand-off ceremony.

According to Dave Hubbard, Executive Director of NMEDA, the Dodge Grand Caravan is the vehicle most converted in North America when it comes to fulfilling the needs of individuals with disabilities.

“Over 18 million people in North America are living with restrictive mobility issues,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO, Chrysler Canada. “Chrysler Group is pleased to help these individuals, whether through efforts like the Dodge Grand Caravan given to Jeff Scott for his inspiring tale, or via our AutoAbility program which reimburses consumers purchasing adaptive driving or passenger equipment for their new vehicle, up to $750.”

David ZatzDavid Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304

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