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Area swimmer launches disabilities awareness campaign

POSTED August 19, 2011 10:12 p.m.

Turlock native Harry Boucher is using his love of swimming to spread the message that people with disabilities deserve to Live Without Limits. Boucher was inspired by his 7-year-old son, Max, to reach out to the public with his Live Without Limits campaign. Max was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when he was 2-years-old and uses a wheelchair and a walker to get around.

“When I started realizing and noticing all of the limitations he had it was a little overwhelming,” Boucher said.

Max attends a mainstream elementary school and isn’t able to use the playground equipment because it is not wheelchair accessible. He can’t use the water slide at the pool, sit in the bleachers at a sports stadium, or access many areas that most people take for granted.

“The older he gets the more we realize that attention should be given towards more wheelchair access,” Boucher said.

The ultimate goal of Live Without Limitations is to raise awareness of the limitations that people with mobility challenges face. Boucher hopes to spread the message at open water swim events. He recently swam the Alcatraz Challenge in the San Francisco Bay. His swim resume also includes Chesbro Reservoir and a Lake Tahoe relay.

“Ultimately, I want to go international to raise awareness,” Boucher said.

Boucher will compete in a 2 mile swim from Point Richmond in the East Bay in September. Max will likely be at the finish line, cheering him on.

To contact Andrea Goodwin email agoodwin@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2003.

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