Kelda Wood aims to be the first adaptive solo rower across the Atlantic Ocean. Each day on her 3,000 mile row, she’s telling the story of a different young person. Yesterday was the turn of our Junior Trooper Ryan – take a minute to read below, be inspired by Ryan and marvel at just how amazing Kelda and her Row To Raise challenge is!
“Ryan Gregson is a talented, sport loving twelve year old from Cambuslang, Glasgow who lives with his Mum Debbie, Dad Stevie and seven year old brother Callum. On meeting Ryan, you are struck with a cute face and a quiet, confident manner. He is a tall lad who seems older than his years.
Ryan was born with congenital limb difference affecting his left hand. This was a shock for his parents as it didn’t show on any scans prior to birth. Stevie is missing his right hand from birth, but the chances genetically of this following on to his children are extremely rare.
Debbie and Stevie naturally worried about the physical challenges Ryan would face in life without his hand. Growing up, Ryan saw his Dad overcome any issues and just like him, his disability has never held him back. Ryan doesn’t wear a prosthetic hand, as a child he was given a cosmetic one and it was soon tossed across the room! He could get more done without it and it soon became a hindrance. Technology is improving in hand robotics, so the family may consider prosthetics in the future.
In 2014, a chance meeting at WestMARC Rehabilitation Centre in Glasgow opened many doors for the family. Debbie started chatting to Corinne Hutton, founder of ‘Finding Your Feet’ Amputee Charity (FYF). Corinne is a quadruple amputee who contracted Sepsis in 2013, following acute pneumonia. She started FYF to support and motivate people affected by amputation or limb difference, encouraging social inclusion and an active lifestyle. Many amputees can easily become housebound and lonely, isolated from society.
Ryan soon became a junior ‘Trooper’ and active member of FYF, enjoying climbing, skiing, cycling and conquering many challenges including a zip line adventure and an abseil down a high building. Debbie and Stevie soon realised their son was a daredevil with no fear! They also admired him for fundraising for FYF within his local community…”