GARDENDALE — A local house needs to be updated in order to meet the needs of a young boy in a wheelchair, and his church is heading up the fundraising effort.
Ethan Quick, 13, was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy when he was about 5 years old. He is now confined to a wheelchair or a hospital bed.
Ethan lives in Gardendale with his mother, Jamie Quick; his grandparents, Robert and Johnnie Thomas; and his younger brother and sister, Eric, 9 and Faith, 12.
Their house has a split foyer. A lift gets Ethan up the first set of steps, but his parents and grandparents must manually lift him and carry him the rest of the way, and to and from the car.
Members of the family’s church, Central Baptist in Gardendale, built a ramp at the house on Saturday, but the house needs more work to accommodate Ethan’s wheelchair.
Bonnie Bradford, who attends Central Baptist and has been friends with the Thomas and Quick family for about 20 years, said church members want to replace the carpet with laminate flooring to make it easier for Ethan to use his wheelchair throughout the house.
Bradford said the bathroom also needs to be made more wheelchair-accessible.
In addition, church members want to put in a circular driveway; much of the yard is worn away because the family has to pull the car up to the front door in order to get Ethan in and out.
Another big need is a wheelchair-accessible vehicle. Right now, Ethan’s mother has to lift him to get him back and forth between their car and his wheelchair.
When they get a vehicle that can carry his electric wheelchair, Ethan will be able to use it at home. Right now, he leaves it at school — Bragg Middle — and uses a manual wheelchair at home.