Quadriplegic athlete begins eastbound ride on Route 66 for charity

Recovering quadriplegic athlete and author Aaron Baker kicked off his global “Adversity Into Adventure World Tour” that includes him riding on Route 66.

Baker began his trek today from Casa Colina Hospital and Centers for Healthcare in Pomona, California. His journey along historic Route 66 will include meetups and stops in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Illinois. Columbia Distributing is sponsoring the tour.

Working to harness the power of community to uplift and inspire “diverse-abled” individuals, Baker seeks to wheel, walk and roll his way around the globe in a self-powered journey spanning five continents.

According to the website, Baker expects to cross the United States in five months. To span the globe, he’ll be on the road for more than two years. More about his world tour can be found here and here.

The trek will raise money for the nonprofit Adversity Into Adventure Foundation, which supports recreation, rehabilitation and neurological research for individuals with disabilities. Donations to the foundation can be made here.

Baker, a former professional motorsports athlete, survived an accident in 1999 where he suffered a career-ending spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chin down.

Despite doctors’ prognosis that Baker would be unlikely to regain enough mobility to even feed himself again, Baker defied the odds and persevered in his recovery. Today he is a husband, father, speaker and ardent adventure athlete.

Baker also wrote the inspirational memoir, “The Rebellious Recovery” and was the subject of a documentary, “Coming To My Senses.” Baker is the co-founder of the Center of Restorative Exercise and sits on the board of directors of the Wings For Life Foundation among other nonprofit and community-based organizations.

This video shows and tells more of Baker’s story:

“At Adversity Into Adventure Foundation, we believe that adversity doesn’t define us; it’s how we respond to it that shapes our adventure. We aim to equip individuals with the tools, experiences, and support necessary to overcome obstacles and turn adversity into a catalyst for self-discovery,” Baker said.

(Courtesy photo of Aaron Baker aboard his trike)

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