This is where the staff of the Reeve Foundation is sharing up-to-the-minute information and putting some context around the news affecting the spinal cord injury and paralysis community. Not to mention insight into what's going on here at the Foundation.
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Yesterday, Christopher Reeve's wheelchair, a piece of history that resides in the lobby of the Reeve Foundation's office, was moved to New York City to a window display at Rockefeller Plaza. In commemoration of September marking Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month, the wheelchair will be on display through September 30th to help generate awareness of spinal cord injury and paralysis and inspire and galvanize passersby to support the Reeve Foundation’s work.
For weeks leading up to yesterday, there was excitement whirling around our offices. There was no looking back once yesterday arrived. I came into the office with this overwhelming feeling that this piece of artwork was about to be on display making a bigger impact than I could have ever imagined.
It started with carefully taking apart some of the pieces of the wheelchair in order to easily transport it and put it in the window, followed by the journey bringing the wheelchair to Rockefeller Plaza. Riding in the van, I reflected on the symbolism of Christopher's empty wheelchair as we passed the Freedom Tower... Christopher's wheelchair defines what we hope to one day accomplish: independence, being limitless, opportunities, a weight lifted.
It's hard to put into words the meaning of Christopher's wheelchair in the window display. "Emotional." "Powerful." That's what some of our supporters have already described it as. What I can say, my favorite part of yesterday was seeing people already stopping and staring reading the following message:
This is the wheelchair Christopher Reeve spent the last nine years of his life in, paralyzed from the neck down after a riding accident. He always dreamed of the day he, and millions of others, might walk again. From this chair, he worked tirelessly to make that happen, giving speeches, appearing before Congress, traveling the country to inspire and encourage others.
Today, Christopher’s dream has the promise of becoming real.
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is funding a groundbreaking new procedure called Epidural Stimulation Therapy. Just as a body’s power can be turned off, epidural stimulation enables it to be turned back on. Small electrical pulses reawaken nerve cells in the spinal cord, substantially improving an individual’s quality of life.
If you’d like to learn more, go to www.ChristopherReeve.org.
Text “REEVE” to 20222 to make a $5 donation. Charge will be applied to your next cell phone bill.
We’re about to turn a corner. There’s new hope for everyone living with paralysis. Christopher didn’t live to see this day. But he imagined it in his mind many times.
A world of wheelchairs.
All of them empty.
A huge thank you goes out to Fun Truck'n Mobility who generously donated a van to us to transport the wheelchair safely to its new temporary home, EHE International Showcases who donated the window space, and the many creative brains at BBDO New York for creating this incredible display.
To some, a wheelchair just represents a means of getting around. To others, it represents their quality of life. To our community, Christopher's wheelchair represents his dream of empty wheelchairs, freedom, and the mission the Reeve Foundation carries forward in his honor.
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