By Michilea Patterson, The Mercury
POTTSTOWN >> This week’s Mercury Mile will be a walk in the park, literally. Everyone’s invited to stretch their legs with a nice afternoon stroll in the company of other community members.
A local nonprofit organization will host the next Mercury Mile to discuss mobile options available for individuals with disabilities that want to exercise outdoors. The afternoon stroll will take place at NOON TODAY on the paved trail of Pottstown Memorial Park. The address is 75 W. King St. which is near the Manatawny Street intersection.
Garrett Coyne, of Gilbertsville, was diagnosed with Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis, better known as Batten Disease, in 2014 when he was 4 years old. The inherited disorder affects the nervous system. Coyne is now a 2nd grader at New Hanover Upper Frederick Elementary School. He is blind and can’t walk independently because of the disease.
“Garrett the Grand — Batten Fighter” is a nonprofit organization that was created to fund research for Batten Disease. The Coyne family faces many challenges because of the disorder.
“In dealing with these challenges, his family have found the importance of wellness of the body and mind. They have also come into contact with many other families who face similar challenges and would love to exercise and enjoy the outdoors with their loved ones. Through this, Garrett the Grand Wellness has evolved,” according to a statement provided by the organization.
The organization has a disability bike as well as a running or walking chair that can be used by both adults and children with disabilities. The hope is to grow the program and add even more bikes and chairs.
“We hope the Mercury Mile walk will give the community a chance to see that this equipment can make a stroll in the park possible for families with disabled members and show them that the support is available if they want to take on bigger challenges,” according to the statement.
For more information about the disability bike or running chair, contact Joe Coyne at GarrettTheGrand@gmail.com. For more information about the Garrett the Grand nonprofit organization, visit battenfighter.com or visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/GarretttheGrand.
If there is inclement weather on Wednesday afternoon then the walk be cancelled and another Mercury Mile will resume next week. The Mercury Mile is a free, weekly community activity. The location of the walk changes from week to week.