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Rolling Right Along

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28) -- Sportability of Iowa Director Jayden Barrett said many people told him stealing wheelchairs is like taking soup from a soup kitchen. They thought it would take years to get replacement wheelchairs. But it turns out, with just a little help, theyre well ahead of schedule.

For people in wheelchairs, overcoming obstacles is something they do every day.

"The more you do, the more you can, the less you do, the less you can, said Vern Willey, who broke his back during a bicycle accident at 1997, when he was 47 years old. That's kind of the way I've always been, if there's something, I'm going to try and do it."

But when all 13 Sportability of Iowa sportscharis were stolen in December, they thought theyd have to cancel the annual Paralymic Experience event.

"We use these chairs for everything, said Barrett. They're really the foundation of our programs."

The event allows people in wheelchairs to see whats possible and allows people not normally in wheelchairs to see what its like.

"An important part of cycling is sociability and it's community and because the equipment is available, people with all sorts of special needs can be involved in that community, said All Ability Cycles Owner John Brunow.

Joel Johnsons children both have cerebral palsy. Today he got a chance to get around the way his daughter does: on wheels.

"From being able to get into the chair easily to assistance that's needed for the biking, said Johnson.

That understanding helps build a community. The same community that came together when Sportability needed it the most.

"We've had just everyday people come up and give us $20, $40, all the way to people in California donating $10,000 worth of equipment," said Barrett.

Thanks to donations both small and big, Sportabilty rolls right along.
 
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