Fourth and Fifth Day

Yesterday our cameras finally caught Zack out of his comfort zone. We departed Baltimore bright and early Pittsburgh bound to meet our new friend Johnny Stark. Johnny  had reached out to us about two months ago explaining how the past three years of his SCI has been a total blast. We arrived just outside Pittsburgh where Johnny introduced us to the Mighty Penguin sled hockey team . Despite living in Rhode Island, a hockey hotbed, for his whole life Zack was like a fish out of water to begin the practice. Despite looking the part ( Zack is kind of a burley mountain man’ish looking fellow) He could barely steer his sled. Never-the-less he surprised himself by having a blast for the short time we had the ice. After the sled hockey practice we headed down some beautiful Western Pennsylvania country roads during sunset on our way to our Pittsburgh host, Kathy Laffy. Two nights before we arrived in the Pittsburgh area we did not even know who Kathy was; she was recommended to us by Kirk Bauer of DSUSA who we interviewed on Sunday. Despite being complete strangers we greeted each other as if we were long lost friends. Kathy has been working with Kirk and DSUSA for 30 years and could not have been more enthusiastic  about hosting us with a meal, some drinks, and a pre-bedtime jacuzzi session.

  Today Kathy made sure we were fed a hearty breakfast before our departure. Before we skipped out of Pennsylvania we met up with Johnny Sparks again, this time at his local skate park where the Mighty Penguins’ Coach Ray joined us while Johnny shredded up the park for our cameras. He even let Zack try out his chair and was really stoked when Zack dove right into it bye jumping stairs and dropping into the bowl with no prior experience.  For the afternoon we drove through Pittsburgh in bumper to bumper traffic which was a perfect time to grab some b roll shots of downtown. We topped of the day bye meeting a car full of super cute girls who were totally intrigued by us. We were able to hand them Endless Abilities bumper stickers while they were right next to us in the tunnel leaving the city.  We basically just had a dance party  during the whole traffic jam, something the other travelers were really amused by. What a blast! The perfect way to begin our 600 plus mile journey to St. Louis.