Darrell Gwynn Foundation Donates $22,000 Wheelchair to Addison Santana of Orlando, Fla.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR Star and Daytona 500 contender Clint Bowyer won his third Hot Rods & Reels charity fishing tournament at the Daytona International Speedway on Friday, February 22. The annual fishing tournament pairs NASCAR Drivers with sponsors and race fans for a fun day of fishing on Lake Lloyd during Speedweek to benefit the foundation’s Wheelchair Donation Program and Patient Assistance Fund. The Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s mission is to provide SUPPORT for people with paralysis and PREVENT spinal cord injuries.
“I just want everyone to know this is my third title,” said a smiling Clint Bowyer. “This is such a great event. I really had a great time today and I’m happy for Addison who got his new wheelchair. The work Darrell and his foundation does is amazing.”
Clint Bowyer and his fishing team of Jeff Smith, Kimberley Meesters and Kelby Waldrip won the tournament by catching three bass with a combined weight of 10.04lbs. It was Bowyer’s third Hot Rods & Reels tournament championship of his career. Jack Thorton of Extreme Super Truck caught the biggest fish of the day, netting a 4.33lbs. bass.
The Darrell Gwynn Foundation, on behalf of its donors and supporters donated a $22,000 custom power wheelchair to 9 year-old Addison Santana of Orlando, Fla. at the Hot Rods & Reels Charity Fishing Tournament on Friday, February 22 at the Daytona International Speedway.
Addison is diagnosed with Arthogryposis. His current wheelchair was too small and his health insurance denied his claim for the power wheelchair he needs. With the new wheelchair donated by the Darrell Gwynn Foundation, Addison will receive the gift of mobility, freedom and independence and he will be able to go back to school and play with his friends.
Addison enjoyed his time at the Hot Rods & Reels Charity Fishing Tournament as all the star drivers who participated in the event spent precious time with Addison on his big day. NASCAR Stars Tony Stewart, Clint Bowyer, Ryan Newman, Joey Coulter, Joe Nemecheck, Jeff Hammond, David Ragan, Donnie Allison, Bobby Labonte, Dave Blaney, David Gilliand, Brian Vickers and Aric Almoria participated in the event and spent time with Addison on the Lake Lloyd dock.
“I love fishing!,” said an elated Addison in his new wheelchair. Bass Pro Shops of Orlando donated a rod and reel so he can fish in his new wheelchair. Addison summed up his special day simply by saying, “this is awesome.”
The Darrell Gwynn Foundation also presented Speediatrics with a check for $10,000 using proceeds from the fishing tournament. Speediatrics is a racing themed pediatric unit at Halifax Hospital in Daytona Beach, Fla. The donation was made through the Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s Patient Assistance Fund.
About the Darrell Gwynn Foundation
Founded in 2002 by Champion Racer Darrell Gwynn and his wife, Lisa, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization whose mission is to provide SUPPORT for people living with paralysis and PREVENT spinal cord injuries. The foundation’s primary support program is its national Wheelchair Donation Program. With this program the Darrell Gwynn Foundation has donated custom built wheelchairs to hundreds of individuals in need. The foundation also maintains a Patient Assistance Fund offering support services and tools at Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colorado with aspirations to expand this model to several hospitals nationwide. The Patient Assistance Fund also supports two Speediatrics Units the Betty Jane France Pediatric Center, at Halifax Hospital in Daytona, Fla. and Homestead Hospital in Homestead, Fla. Additionally, the Patient Assistance Fund provides financial support through its Fast Track Laboratory with the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis aimed at finding a cure for paralysis. The foundation operates an Education & Prevention Program directed to high school students to educate them on the dangers of risky behavior that can lead to spinal cord injuries. This rapidly growing program reaches over 10,000 students annually at over 50 high schools. In an effort to create more awareness about spinal cord injuries, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation successfully lobbied for and established a National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month and Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week in Florida. With tremendous fundraising partners such as Barrett-Jackson, the NHRA, NASCAR and many more generous sponsors, individual supporters and donors, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation continues to evolve as a leading foundation for those with spinal cord injuries and living with paralysis. For more information please visit www.darrellgwynnfoundation.org or www.facebook.com/darrellgwynnfoundation.