Hansen’s ‘motion’ relay stops in Barrie

Barrie will be a stop in the 25th anniversary relay of Rick Hansen’s 1986 Man In Motion worldwide tour.
And while it’s not yet known whether Hansen himself will be here, Barrie’s own Community Difference Maker, Heather Hollingshead, will be the final medal bearer of the Barrie lag of the relay.
The 2011/12 relay is structured to celebrate the efforts of 7,000 ‘difference makers’ across the country, such as Hollingshead. Medal bearers will carry and pass along the Rick Hansen Medal, produced by the Royal Canadian Mint. Hansen will make an appearance at a number of stops along the relay, but it’s the 7,000 ‘difference makers’ who are completing the relay.
The original ‘motion’ tour was launched to raise funds for spinal cord injury (SCI) research. That tour not only took Hansen across Canada, but also around the world to 34 different countries. It also spawned a legacy, the Rick Hansen Foundation, which has grown the $26 million raised during the first tour to more than $254 million for SCI research, rehabilitation and quality-of-life initiatives.
The tour comes to Barrie Thursday, Dec. 8, stopping at City Hall from 5-8 p.m. It began Aug. 24 in Cape Spear, Newfoundland, and is scheduled to conclude May 22 in Vancouver.
A number of activities are planned, including performances by local school choirs, presentations by some of Barrie’s own paralympics athletes, displays and demonstrations by local organizations working to increase accessibility, and presentations by the Rick Hansen Foundation.
Hansen was born on Aug. 26, 1957, in Port Alberni, BC. In 1973 he and a friend were thrown from the back of a pickup truck on the way home from fishing. He sustained a spinal cord injury, resulting in paralysis from the waist down.
Click here for the relay map.

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