IT STARTED as an off-the-cuff comment to a family friend about how easy it must be to be in a wheelchair.
But now Jordan Merrick understands only too well just how tough it is after spending 24 hours on two wheels.
Now I know how difficult it is I would hate to be in a wheelchair full time.Jordan Merrick
The 15-year-old’s little brother Sam inspired his family to set up the charity Sam’s Haven, which sends seriously-ill children on much-needed breaks to a caravan in West Sussex.
The family, from Denmead, are going to Disney Land, Florida, at the end of the month courtesy of the charity Caudwell Children and Jordan did the wheelchair challenge to raise money for the organisation.
He said: ‘Being in a wheelchair is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be. I ended up staying in all day as it hurt my arms too much to go out and play.
‘Now I know how difficult it is I would hate to be in a wheelchair full time. Even going to the toilet is difficult.
‘Luckily my bedroom is downstairs so it made it easier for me.’
Mum Louise said she was very proud of her eldest son, who was challenged after commenting to one of the Sam’s Haven’s trustees that her wheelchair looked good fun.
Louise, of Bere Road, said: ‘He soon realised that it isn’t much fun.
‘He couldn’t even take a cup of tea to his room because he had to push.
‘As for my house, I now have marked doors and a broken unit because he fell out of the wheelchair and headbutted it. But we don’t mind – we’re very proud of his dedication.
‘Sam’s health has been poor since July and the countdown to this break away has given the whole family the much-needed lift we need.’
The family will spend a week in Florida. The charity charters a flight and a team of doctors will be there to help Sam, and other seriously-ill children, enjoy the holiday as much as possible.
There is still time to sponsor Jordan. Go to justgiving.com/jordan-merrick1.