This is a story of extraordinary people. And it all began when I received an email from Jerry. He was bringing his family to Israel and wanted to plan a special trip for his twins, Evan and Emily. It was clear from the start how truly unique these two are.
Two weeks ago, when I first met Evan and Emily, I fell in love with their energy. As a father of twins myself, I connected with them immediately. The first fay on their Israel itinerary is one of the most unique I have ever had the pleasure of guiding.
In his email, Jerry told that Evan is about to have his Bar Mitzvah. In honor of the event, he is volunteering with Project Walk – for Spinal Cord Injury recovery.
“His twin sister, Emily” Jerry continued, “is a dancer.”
Jerry asked if I could personalize their itinerary so that Evan and Emily could meet people that are living with injuries.
Intrigued by Jerry’s request, I turned to Iris, my colleague and logistics coordinator for Milestones Israel. She came up with the name Doron Shaziri, one of Israel’s most well known paralympic athletes. He is the man that will carry the Israeli flag into London at the start of the Paralympics on August 29th.
Doron owns a small workshop in which he builds customized wheelchairs for athletes and dancers. When Iris asked if he would be interested in hosting Evan and Emily in his workshop, he was more than happy to oblige. When he heard that Emily was a dancer, he put us in touch with a client of his who dances in a wheelchair at Beit haLochem, a sports center for rehabilitating those injured and disabled during their army service.
Doron told us of how he lost his leg in a minefield in Lebanon and how he never lets himself stop struggling for a normal life.
He showed Evan and Emily some tricks on the wheelchair and even taught them some of his wheeled moves.
In less then two weeks, Doron will carry the Israeli flag in London, representing Israel in the paralympic games. His heart and determination are sure to bring home a gold.