Bossier City Man to Make 250-Mile Handcycle Journey to Promote Brain Injury Awareness

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"Cycling for Independence" Kick-Off Event Will be Held Oct. 6 at Parkway High School

An image of Scott Wells of Bossier City, La.

Scott Wells of Independence Regained will make a 250-mile journey by handcycle beginning Oct. 6.

The 250-mile trip will make stops in Coushatta, Natchitoches, Boyce, Alexandria, Pineville, Marksville and Baton Rouge.

Scott Wells of Bossier City, La., began his journey to regain independence 13 years ago, when he was left paralyzed following a car accident in South Carolina. The next step in his journey will be “Cycling for Independence”, a 250-mile handcycle ride that will begin with a public kick-off event, 8-11 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 6 at Parkway High School in Bossier City. The "Cycling for Independence" ride will end at the Louisiana State Capitol in Baton Rouge on Oct. 12.

“The goal of 'Cycling for Independence' is to raise awareness about brain and spinal cord injuries, provide education to prevent these types of injuries and to develop needed resources to help individuals that are affected by brain and spinal cord injuries in the Shreveport-Bossier area and the Ark-La-Tex region,” Wells said. “It is my long-term goal to eventually see a hospital in this area that can handle the acute injury phase, recovery and rehabilitation phases, and continue providing needed resources to see these patients be fully reintegrated to their functional level of independence.”

The 250-mile trip will make stops in Coushatta, Natchitoches, Boyce, Alexandria, Pineville, Marksville and Baton Rouge. The Cycling for Independence team is currently scheduling event stops at local hospitals and high schools along the way to provide educational programs for teenagers and adults in order to prevent brain and spinal cord injuries.

The Independence Regained team includes Amanda Mahoney, Physical Therapist from LSU Health Shreveport School of Allied Health, Ken Candler, RN from Cornerstone Hospital, Adrianne Stelzenmuller, Aquatic Therapist and LMT from Brooklyn, NY, as well as Oak House Films, who will be filming the ride. Two other paraplegic handcyclists, both Afghanistan veterans, are planning to make the journey with Wells. The public is invited to join Wells along the route and ride along with him for portions of the trek.

Wells, 41, is the President and CEO of Independence Regained, a 501(c)(3) organization with a mission "to rehabilitate, educate and integrate people with Spinal Cord Injury (SCI), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and other eurological disorders back into all aspects of an independent life.”

For more information concerning Independence Regained, or to contact Scott Wells, visit http://www.independenceregained.org. Plans are currently being made to allow supporters to track Wells' journey via the website and through social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

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