Team Gleason has been a big fan of Eryn Baird from New Mexico since her first email to us.
“I was diagnosed almost six years ago, but I’ve been in a wheelchair for almost five years. You’re right having ALS sucks, but it’s also an opportunity for learning. After I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I decided to stop listening to the doctors and research that says that all ALS patients have to die and treat it as just another challenge to overcome. I was a swimmer through college at the University of Miami. I still exercise everyday and try to eat well and do everything I can to stay healthy. Unlike many ALS patients, I know exactly when my symptoms started. I was 31 years old and it was the day after I gave birth to our second child.”
We bounced back a couple of adventure ideas with Eryn that never ended up working out. So, when she asked if she could come to the Superbowl, we tried to make it work and we did! With the donations to The Gleason Initiative Foundation we were able to pay for her plane flights and hotel rooms, and with Team Gleason supporters we were able to get her two tickets to the game.
She came to New Orleans with her caregiver and Kerrie Copelin
from the New Mexico ALS Association, who is a big fan of Eryn’s as well.
The trip had obstacles but as we like to say, Awesome Ain’t Easy..
Steve got to spend time with her at the Game and some of us got to meet her at The Team Gleason House.
From Eryn, post Super Bowl
Pretty great description of what we want these TG adventures to inspire.
“Michel and Steve,
I want to thank you again for everything. I was never a big talker, but now that my voice is messed up I say even less. The whole trip was amazing and I’m so glad we got to see the residence. It provides such a wonderful option for people who want to maintain their independence. And, going on the field and watching the game were beyond amazing. It still feels like a dream, except I have the pictures to prove it was real.
More than anything the trip reminded me that with a little effort, I can still do fun stuff. I was already planning a rafting trip for this spring. Now, I’m thinking about adding a hiking trip. Where did you get the manual wheelchair that Steve was in in the video. I’m also going to try doing some photography and video making.
Anyway, I can’t thank you enough for the trip and the inspiration. If there is ever anything I can do to help you, just let me know. And, in six months or a year try pulling Rivers on a skateboard or sled tied behind the wheelchair. My kids loved it!
Eryn and her Kiddos:)