Sunday, May 8, 2016

He's not heavy. He's my brother.

Brandon Gandee, 9, of Temperance, Michigan, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at age one. He usually uses a walker to get around. But in 2014 his older brother Hunter decided to carry Brandon on his back on a "Cerebral Palsy Swagger" to raise awareness and understanding of the disease. Their first swagger went 40 miles. In 2015 they hiked 57 miles. This year they walked 111 miles in five days, with help from Brandon's other siblings.

                                                                                                               Facebook / Hunter Gandee
"There was a point where I was worried we might not be able to go on," Hunter admitted. On the fourth day, I started having a lot of pain in my hip." He said a friend prayed for him, and he was able to complete the journey. Friends, family and strangers joined in along the trek. This was the family's last swagger, since Brandon is now 70 pounds and Hunter will be at college next year. Hunter says, "The goal for this walk was to challenge the world at all levels to take the necessary steps toward inclusion." Even without the swagger, but they will find creative ways to help us all embrace folks with disabilities.

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