Alexus (Lex) Lasiter was born with Cerebral Palsy. She also suffers from a seizure disorder and has heart troubles and kidney problems. Typically, Lex goes to the doctor’s office at least once a month, but after a series of bladder problems brought her to the emergency room three times over a period of just a few weeks, the usually exuberant 7-year old was feeling very sad and down. Her mom wanted to do something to cheer her up….
Lex has two big loves in life; horses and receiving her own mail. So, her mom enlisted the help of an artist she knew to draw a picture of a horse for Lex and mail it to her. The artist; Travis Barker, then enlisted the help of some of his friends to also draw pictures of horses. In total, over 30 individuals contributed drawings of horses. The positive response prompted Barker to start a Facebook page devoted to the project, and so Horses for Lex was created.
The reaction continued to be overwhelming, with the Facebook site receiving hundreds of likes within days. More than 200 letters with paintings, sketches and drawings have arrived for Lex from across the U.S. and as far away as England, Germany, the Ukraine and Australia. To date, the Facebook page has over 10,000 likes!
One day, Barker received a message from Becky Anne Ross, a Florida woman who said she wanted to give Lex the ultimate gift: a horse named Snickerdoodle. Snickerdoodle had been rescued from abuse and had been given to another little girl with Cerebral Palsy. The young girl had started to outgrow the horse---opening up an opportunity for Lex. Lex’s love of horses had actually started when she attended horse therapy at the age of three. With adults by her side, Lex would go for a gentle ride on a horse. The motion of the horse’s trot made Lex flex muscles that she normally wouldn’t use, thereby strengthening the trunk of her body as well as her legs. Lex loved the horse therapy program, but unfortunately, it lost its funding and so her sessions stopped.
Barker messaged the family to see if they’d be able to take care of a horse. Luckily, the family was friends with a local horse rescue organization that could board Snickerdoodle until a more permanent home could be found. Hoofprints of the Heart, a rescue group in Arizona volunteered to transport the horse from Florida back to Oklahoma for the family.
Lex’s parents told her that they were making a trip to Florida so that she could ride a horse again and see the ocean for the first time in her life. Her parents decided to keep the fact that Snickerdoodle would be coming home a surprise.
When Lex arrived in Florida and met Snickerdoodle, her parents could see the happiness and excitement in her eyes immediately!
As soon as Lex got on the horse and began to ride him around the courtyard at the stables, everyone could see the bond beginning to form! Anytime Lex would slightly lose her balance, Snickerdoodle would simply stop and stand still, as he completely understood her special needs. At the end of her ride, the surprise was revealed that Lex could take Snickerdoodle home!
Lex’s story reminds us all of the power of the human spirit — and how powerful gestures of kindness (no matter how great or seemingly small) have an amazing impact.
MobilityWorks will be on hand at the Abilities Expo in San Jose this coming Friday through Sunday at the San Jose Convention Center. Meet with our local team members to discuss your vehicle needs, talk about adaptive equipment, or just stop and say hello. While you're there, don't forget to pick up one of our free, 24-page color Product Guides. Admission is FREE! For more information, go to the San Jose Abilities Expo web page here.
Products, Services and Technologies for All Disabilities
No matter what your physical challenge, the Abilities Expo in San Jose strives to provide an array of products and services to help you meet and overcome your daily encounters. You will have the opportunity to see cutting-edge devices and equipment to determine which ones will meet your individual needs. Check out the Retail Pavilion for a variety of different products that can be purchased and taken home from the Expo.
We hope to see you there!
Admission is FREE!
2014 San Jose Abilities Expo Hours:
Friday, Nov 21
11 AM - 5 PM
Saturday, Nov 22
11AM - 5 PM
Sunday, Nov 23
11 AM - 4 PM
Bay Area Expo Address:
San Jose McEnery Convention Center
150 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, CA 95113
It's that time of year when everyone is offering special deals and "super blowout" sales – just in time for the Holiday buying spree. Well, we couldn't resist announcing a special offer ourselves. From now until December 1st, clients can get 0% APR financing for up to 72 months on all of 2014 BraunAbility Dodge Grand Caravans in stock. On 2014 Chrysler Town & Country vans, we can offer 1.9% APR for up to 84 months! And for 2015 model years, we can offer 2.9% APR financing for up to 84 months!
If you've been thinking about buying a mobility vehicle, or considering trading up from your current accessible van, now is the time to take advantage of these super low financing offers.
Call us now at 1-877-275-4907 to schedule a free needs analysis, trade-in value assessment, or just to look around and try out our new and used wheelchair vans for sale at 32 convenient sales and service showroom locations.
*Qualified buyers only, with approved credit.
Veterans Day Parade Includes Words of Thanks from Those Currently Serving
MobilityWorks once again participated in Tuesday's Veterans Day parade in San Jose California featuring MobilityWorks' popular Conquest wheelchair accessible motorcycle. WWII Airman Pat Parker rode along with Tony Bandermann, MobilityWorks Client Relations Manager. What made it so special was the outpouring of thanks given to Mr. Parker by the large number of young Marines that were hand also participating in the parade. One by one, each marine lined up to shake his his hand.
Tony Bandermann was thrilled to ride with the WWII veteran because this was Mr. Parker's first time appearing in a Veterans Day parade. He also has a special connection to all WWII veterans. His father was a child in Germany during the war, vividly remembering feeling liberated by Germany's defeat and by the American bombers delivering much needed food, water and toys to Germans when the fighting stopped. Read more about Tony’s father below…
Tony Bandermann's father continued from above...
During the war, he and other Germans grew skeptical and fearful of their country's goals and thus were terrified that they would win. His love for America grew as Germany was rebuilt under the Marshall Plan. He eventually emigrated from Germany to America at 19 year of age in 1954. He then served in the Navy Reserve in the 1960's, spending time at sea.
After pursuing a PhD in physics, Mr. Bandermann spent his career helping America in the Cold War as a missile defense engineer for Lockheed-Martin. He married an American woman and had three children; Tony being one of them. He is a very proud American with a thick German accent and he feels that he owes his life to WWII veterans like Mr. Parker. He is also a musician that has written several pieces that honor the U.S. military. As a church organist, he occasionally plays these at this time of year.
Thank you Airman Parker for your dedication and service to our country. Because of you we are a free country today. And thank you Tony for sharing the story of your father and his contributions in protecting the American way of life.
Today, the MobilityWorks family honors all of our brave veterans. To those who served or are currently serving in every corner of the earth, and in every military service, thank you for your service and sacrifice. Because of your courage and willingness to serve your fellow Americans, we are able to enjoy the freedoms that we now have. Free to dream of new possibilities and to hope for a better future. You are our heroes.
Origins of Veterans Day
The Great War left nine million dead and twenty-one million wounded soldiers. It would later be known as World War I. Millions more civilians died in the four-year conflict.
On the 11th hour of the 11th day in the 11th month, on November 11, 1918 representatives of France, Britain and Germany met to sign an armistice that ended the Great War. This was the origins of Veterans Day. One year later on November 11th in 1919, President Woodrow proclaimed the first Armistice Day with the following words:
"To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations."
In 1954, Congress officially changed the name to Veterans Day to honor all of our military veterans. At 11 AM, a wreath will be laid at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington Cemetery. This tradition was started by President Warren Harding in 1921.
MobilityWorks Team Member Veterans
|Team Member||Branch of Military||City|
|Steve Riffle||Army||San Jose|
|Donald Salman||Navy||San Jose|
|Andy Kempt||Navy||Van Nuys|
|Tony Mavros||Air Force||Van Nuys|
|Andrew Felix||Army||Van Nuys|
|Steve Martin||Army||Villa Park|
|Al Ashworth||Air Force||Villa Park|
|Zakary Carothers||Army Nat'l Guard||Akron|
|Ken Kerwin||Air Force||Akron|
|David Miller||Air Force||Akron|
|Marcus Popp||Ohio Nat'l Guard||Akron|
|Rick Prew||Ohio Nat'l Guard||Akron|
|Will Myers||Army||Kansas City|