Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hello all, this is my first blog for my 2009 Paddling for Parkinsons Trip! I will be trying to raise $20,000 for the National Parkinson Foundation by paddling my kayak from Montana to the Gulf of Mexico via the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers. Now, you might wonder, why the National Parkinson Foundation?

Well, in 2005 my grandfather was diagnosed with Parkinson disease. After he started receiving treatment, it was amazing how fast all of the family members could tell how much he improved. I can remember Grandpa at Christmas time and the difficulties he had getting himself around. After treatment, he seemed like a whole new man to me. As I was thinking about this trip, I thought, well, I could just organize this trip for myself and it would be a wonderful experience. However, if I put in a bit more work and time, I would have the opportunity to change this trip into something really special that would make a huge difference in a number of other peoples lives. I decided it was worth the work, and asked the National Parkinson Foundation if I could raise money for them. And here I am today.

I am currently working on getting sponsors lined up, in the early stages of fundraising, and obtaining all my gear. The trip is still a long way off but I have gotten a lot of really positive feedback from friends and family and every day I get a little bit more excited about that day when I will push off from Three Forks, Montana. Feel free to post ideas, comments, and your thoughts, I would love to hear from you.

My brother, Jared, has agreed to be my in-situ blogger during my descent. I will be calling him up and he will be posting my progress every couple of days on my blog. I am also working on getting a map function up so that everyone will have a real-time feel for where I am on the river.

Ah well, off to sleep. I have a long day of being a third year med student tomorrow.

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