Joseph Penrod from Detroit, Michigan is a 14-year-old boy who is rapidly losing his mobility. Diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy at the age of six, the disease has gradually taken away his ability to walk and he now needs a motorized wheelchair to get around. According to the Detroit Free Press, the Penrod family is now facing a problem, as they’re unable to get Joseph’s wheelchair in and out of their current vehicle, forcing them to physically lift him in and out of the car.
When fellow teen Caitlin Jodway heard about the family’s plight, she decided to step in and help. She organized a swimathon to raise money for a customized vehicle which will be able to accommodate Joseph’s wheelchair. The 16-year-old swimmer hoped to raise around $10,000 at the “Wheels for Joseph Swimathon” which took place on April 21.
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