Saturday, August 23, 2008

An exceptional accomplishment


An exceptional accomplishment
The Journal Pioneer

From Aug. 14 to 18 Luke McIver, a young man from Kinkora, ran across P.E.I. in support of Parkinson’s.
I first met Luke in early July when he decided to undertake the 245-kilometre run. His determination and spirit were infectious. Just having graduated high school and entering UPEI this fall, Luke could have spent the summer many other ways. Instead, he opted to make a difference as his grandfather had Parkinson’s and his grandmother now lives with Parkinson’s.
Luke’s journey was close to the equivalent of six full marathons in only four days. Luke’s parents, grandparents, friends and teammates all supported his efforts.
It was inspiring to see so many young people from Luke’s high school and soccer teams joining him along the way. Parkinson’s is now being diagnosed in people from their late 20s through early 50s, as Young Onset Parkinson’s is being better understood.
In the Maritimes more than 8,400 people live with the condition for which we still have no known cause or cure. Luke’s efforts to help create awareness and raise funds are an excellent example of how families can support one another while helping our society.
For the run a van was donated, hotel rooms, meals, Vogue Optical our SuperWalk for Parkinson’s sponsor hosted barbecues in both Summerside and Charlottetown, running shoes were provided along with water and refreshments. Businesses, community organizations and individuals made donations tallying more than $7,000 along the way.
Luke McIver’s individual commitment to Parkinson’s brought people from across Prince Edward Island together collectively for the Parkinson’s cause. Today we are hearing lots about Olympic achievements, records being broken and medals being awarded. Running 100 metres or one marathon is an accomplishment, but what this young Islander accomplished is truly exceptional.
To Luke, his parents, family and friends, and to the many Islanders who supported the run, the Parkinson Society Maritime Region thanks you for your generosity and spirit!
Paul D. McNair,
Executive Director,
Parkinson Society Maritime Region

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