Fox grads pitch in to help teen get wheels
An Abbotsford teen is the recipient of a new set of wheels, thanks to Make-A-Wish BC and the graduating class of Port Coquitlam’s Terry Fox secondary school.
But while Andrew Carson, 17, initially requested a car, he’s ecstatic to settle for the customized mountain bike and body armour he received last week. Carson’s new Intense Slopestyle 2 mountain bike was unveiled during a presentation at Velocity Cycles in Fort Langley.
Carson, who is entering Grade 12 at Robert Bateman secondary school, was diagnosed with leukemia this spring after experiencing sudden flu-like symptoms. He has been undergoing treatment ever since, and now receives chemotherapy every 10 days.
His family was approached by Make-a-Wish BC and told that he was eligible to have a wish granted. The teen considered his options.
“Most kids generally do trips,” he said, “but all you get back from them is a memory. I thought I’d rather have something more permanent.”
Carson’s initial request for a car was beyond the permitted budget but his love for mountain biking made it easy to come up with a second choice. Carson has been taking on local trails and those at Whistler Mountain Bike Park since he was 14. He loves the exhilaration of heading over rough terrain on steep slopes and said he’s fortunate that he’s never had a serious spill.
When Carson was told his wish would be granted, he then scoured websites to put together a list of parts and features that would comprise his dream bike.
The bike was built at Velocity Cycle — the only place in B.C. that sells the bike Carson requested — at a reduced rate. It started with the basic frame and manager Travis Peterson said each component was then fully customized “to allow for greater control when travelling over varied terrain.”
“It’s the Lamborghini of mountain bikes,” Peterson said.
Carson is now looking forward to trying out the bike on an upcoming family camping trip. Although his condition and treatment sometime leave him weak and tired, he still has his good days, too.
“Everything’s good now,” he said.
Funds for the bike were raised by the graduating class of Terry Fox secondary, which collected $5,000 throughout the school year as its grad legacy project. The money was matched by the Kids Helping Kids Foundation. Burnaby’s Denise Zunker, who has been a Make-A-Wish volunteer for 10 years, was also instrumental in making the arrangements for Carson’s wish.
• The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. For more information, call 1-866-277-9474 or visit makeawishbc.ca.