First Annual Walk ‘N Roll Will Be A Community Event on Saturday October 12

L. to R. Victoria Smith, Clay Pirtle and Jessica Pope

According to one of it’s organizers Clay Pirtle, a “Walk ‘N Roll” is a celebration for disability awareness, representing the first of it’s kind in Sulphur Springs. The free Walk ‘N Roll event will be held from 11am til 2pm on Saturday October 12, where else? but on Celebration Plaza downtown, and everyone is invited! There will be games and children’s play areas, and walking teams can register for The Walk ‘N Roll around the Plaza. Team members and everyone are encouraged to dress up. Teams can enter a Spirit Stick, and will be recognized during the Walk of Honor and Remembrance. (register at getmeregistered.com, or at the event) Everyone can enjoy a Blue Blazes Drill Team performance. Guest speakers will include Jessica Pope of Sulphur Springs and Mr. Diogo Esaki of Orlando, Florida, a young adult with cerebral palsy who is an employee of Chick Filet and a public speaker for Disability Awareness.

During a KSST Good Morning Show interview, Victoria Smith and Jessica Pope joined Pirtle to invite the public to attend for fun, music and enlightenment about the special needs population around us. “I was first enlightened when our daughter Gemma was born. She’s three years old now, and I’m a stay at home Dad because I personally want to see to her special needs. I’m watching her grow and she is teaching me a lot!” stated Clay. Victoria Smith, whose son Braydon was born with disabilities, is also excited about the local movement for disabilities awareness. “Jacoby and I continue to care for the educational and physical limitations that Braydon still struggles with. We are finding that families who are not dealing with disabilities, special needs or special abilities in their children are becoming more aware of those who are. The Walk ‘N Roll has been conceived to help break down the barriers that separate us, promoting inclusion instead of exclusion. And this event is just the start! It’s a fundraiser for the C.A.R.E. Center, which once built, will offer recreation, game nights, and a safe and caring center for special needs persons of all types, and all ages. In addition to that, it will be a place offering assistance for families seeking help with insurance or respite care or various types of therapy, and to provide a network for these services and more”. Jessica Pope, who works as a 2-1-1 Texas Lead Call Specialist at CANHelp, has been wheelchair-bound since childhood. Following graduation from SSHS and receiving her Master’s degree, Jessica sought to use her education where she could help people. She displays an effervescent and positive outlook on life, ready to use her knowledge and gifts to help others. She strongly supports the creation of the C.A.R.E Center.

The C.A.R.E Center is the vision of Rene Aguilar of Sulphur Springs, who is a caregiver for her niece Kandy Redding, a disabled individual now 40 years old. Because the C.A.R.E. Center will need a specially trained staff, Rene is pursuing higher education and certification in Special Needs Care. She also expresses hope that in time, the C.A.R.E. Center will be able to attract more medically and therapy-trained professionals to Sulphur Springs, as the special needs population grows. To find out more about the October 12 Walk ‘N Roll event and the vision of C.A.R.E, go to Care Center Sulphur Springs on Facebook, or phone Clay Pirtle at 903-243-1614.

Author: Enola Gay

Has enjoyed working for KSST since 1989. Hosts the Good Morning Show with Enola Gay on weekday mornings from 6-9am, so 'start your day with Enola Gay'! Guest interviews during the Morning Show can also be seen in playback on Cable Channel 18 TV. Along with local country music fan Benny Potter, co-produces 1230 West, a Country and Western Swing radio show which airs weekly on Saturdays from 7-8am and repeats on Thursdays from 7-8pm. Also writes "At the Corral Gate", a column appearing weekly in The Millennium Shopper and in the Lifestyles section of ksstradio.com.

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