Expanding His World

Art Estopinan Jr. smiles from the inside of his family's new wheelchair accessible van.

Like all parents, Art and Olga Estopinan want to give their son, Art Jr., a childhood full of fun memories and experiences. However, when your child is diagnosed with a rare disease, that balance can be hard to find when you frequently travel for doctor’s appointments. Art says the family’s wheelchair accessible vehicle from MobilityWorks has given their son the liberty to “expand the window of the hospital into the outside world.”

At a young age, Art Jr. was diagnosed with mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, which causes progressive muscle weakness. While the early stage of Art Jr.’s childhood was focused on finding a diagnosis and treatment for this rare disease, his parents also wanted to make sure he could see all the joys that life has to offer.

“He had been pretty critically ill. Then he started to get stronger, so we looked into the possibility of widening his quality of life and his experiences. That’s when we thought we needed a vehicle to do so,” said his father, Art.

While the Estopinans initially found a used accessible van that helped them transport Art Jr. to his appointments, they soon began their search for a new vehicle that was more modern, reliable, and quiet. Thankfully, their search did not last long, as Art says the perfect vehicle arrived at the MobilityWorks location in Windsor Mill the very night before the Estopinans came in for their appointment.

“It was the right size, it opened on the side for the wheelchair, and we liked the model and the color. We took it as a gift from God that we were able to purchase the vehicle that day,” he said.

Windsor Mill General Manager Michael O’Meara and Certified Mobility Consultant Bernie Church worked quickly with the family to hand over the keys, so they could start making new memories in their new van.

“Michael and Bernie made the process of purchasing a wheelchair accessible vehicle seamless, easy and professional,” Art said. “After we purchased it, they even took our car to our home to do the exchange and took back the old car that we traded in.”

Art says the vehicle has been a “game-changer” for his family because it gives his son the freedom to explore his world.

“Our son now is strong enough that he’s started going to school for the first time ever, he started last fall. We take him to school every day and he is accompanying us more and more to the supermarket. We hope to take him to this zoo this summer in Baltimore, and we hope to take him to the National Aquarium because he likes the fish, he likes animals,” he said.

Whether your summer plans include a trip to the zoo or you just need a reliable way to run errands around town, our team makes finding the right mobility solution easy through MobilitySelect. You can opt for an at-home delivery like the Estopinans, stop into one of our store locations, or even meet with your very own Certified Mobility Consultant virtually! Contact us today to get started.

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