Ryder and Luke Have Safety and Independence

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April 20, 2023
Marissa Penrod

Ryder (17) and Luke (15) are teen brothers who both have Duchenne muscular dystrophy. When they were first diagnosed, their family of 6 was able to remain in their home. Once their physical condition began declining, their parents knew they would need more space for wheelchairs and equipment, and they would need to be on a first level. 

The best option for them was to move their entire family in with their grandparents. The grandparents’ home has more room and better options for accessibility modifications.

Years ago, a kind neighbor installed an electric lift for the boys to get in and out of the house. Over time, the lift began to slow down and was unreliable. With the progressive loss of muscle function, the hallmark of Duchenne, the boys lost the ability to open the door to the lift on their own and they had to use it one at a time. Sometimes they waited in the rain or cold as they took turns.

Ryder and Luke’s dad works the night shift.  In addition to caring for both of her boys, their mom also cares for their older sister who has autism. The family was worried about having an emergency and being unable to get out of the house with their unreliable lift.

Their request to us was simple – a ramp so they could safely get in and out of their home and have the freedom to access their backyard again. 

Ryder and Luke’s mom was overwhelmed with gratitude:

“We needed a safer, more efficient way to get them in and out of the house...especially in the event of an emergency or power outage. Having the new ramp has been awesome! It’s so nice to see the boys have their independence to go up and down the ramp by themselves. It is a relief knowing we have more than one way out for the boys!”

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