On September the 3rd 2011, two former Rugby League players will embark on a 450 mile road trip………….with a difference.
Pete Stephenson and Jimmy Gittins suffered life changing injuries playing the sport they loved. The pair suffered serious spinal injuries when they broke their necks playing Rugby League.
After years of rehabilitation, Pete and Jimmy have defied doctor’s opinions. The early prognosis in both cases was that they would never walk again and that they would lose their independence.
They were both diagnosed as Quadriplegic, a term meaning all four limbs are affected by a degree of paralysis.
After years of hard work, Pete and Jimmy can now walk with the aid of crutches. They both lead full lives with their respective families. Pete is in the middle of a University degree in Huddersfield studying Sports Journalism, while Jimmy is a co-owner of a fitness and rehabilitation Gym in Wakefield.
After seeing all the negative news of late in the press and on T.V regarding assisted suicide in cases of spinal injuries, Pete and Jimmy want to raise awareness to show they IS life after a spinal cord injury.
They plan to INDEPENDENTLY ride a Quad bike from Wakefield to Wales then up to Scotland before returning back down to Wakefield.
They hope to complete the trip of 450 miles in three days with no support team, just each other to depend on. The two nights they are away from home they will camp out in tents and cook their own food in an effort to be entirely INDEPENDENT.
Being on crutches and having limited hand function, the trip will prove to be the biggest challenge the pair have faced since they sustained their injuries.
Pete and Jimmy have been part of many fund raising activities in the past. This time though they hope to emphasise on the awareness factor for anyone who has recently sustained similar injuries to themselves.
Anyone who would like to make a donation though can do through the Try assist benevolent fund (www.tryassist.co.uk.) This fund was set up six years ago to help players and their families financially after sustaining serious injuries through playing Rugby League.
Anyone who is interested in this story or would like to sponsor the pair can contact either Jimmy Gittins on 07779092345 or Pete Stephenson on 07788545601.