Boy with cerebral palsy leads
cyclists from Longview
By: Randy Ross
"And a child shall lead them ...
As the Push America bicycle riders continued their Journey of Hope from Longview
to Shreveport on Friday morning, a young boy with cerebral palsy led the way.
Shortly before leaving the Fairfield Inn, the team declared Austin Oliver, 10,
of Gary an honorary team member and followed his lead out of Longview. Austin
rode on an Amtryke, a tricycle propelled by arm motion that also stimulates leg
Austin's grandmother, Sherry Bush, said he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy
when he was about 3 months old. According to the National Institute of
Neurological Disorders and Stroke, cerebral palsy is an umbrella-like term used
to describe chronic disorders that develop within the first few years of life
and impair movement control.
Bush said Austin attended physical therapy three times a week, and he often
stays with her during the summer while his parents work. His former physical
therapist, Sue Haywood, invented the Amtryke 19 years ago, and Longview Too
Ambucs donated an Amtryke to Oliver three years ago.
Austin said the thought of starting the bicyclists on the next leg of their
cross-country tour gave him butterflies in his stomach.
"They're pretty cool," he said."