Woman Making 300-Mile Trip in Wheelchair for GDA

Tania Finlayson is accompanied by her husband and IAM District Lodge 751 member, Ken, along with a support van with her son, Michael, and IAM members, as she makes a 300-mile trek across the Northwest to raise money for Guide Dogs of America.
Tania Finlayson is accompanied by her husband and IAM District Lodge 751 member, Ken, along with a support van with her son, Michael, and IAM members, as she makes a 300-mile trek across the Northwest to raise money for Guide Dogs of America.

The wife of a District Lodge 751 member is literally going to great lengths to raise money for Guide Dogs of America (GDA).

Tania Finlayson, who was born with Cerebral Palsy and has been confined to a wheelchair and communication through a computer keyboard her entire life, is traveling 300 miles in four, 15-hour days. A generator on her wheelchair designed by her husband’s IAM co-workers at Boeing is helping power the trek from Seattle to Portland and south to Dallas, OR.

Tania said she was inspired to make the trip after taking part in last year’s Flight for Sight Fun Run & Walk, an annual 10K run that benefits GDA. She hopes to raise $42,000 – the amount it takes to train one guide dog.

“I reflected on how lucky I was to have my sight and the independence that it allows me to have,” Tania told a local news station.

Her husband, Ken, is by her side on a bike for most of the trip. Her 7-year-old son, Michael, is riding along in a support van with her husband’s fellow IAM members.

“I think the message is, there are really no excuses,” said Ken. “If Tania can do this to help other people, anybody can go out of their way a little bit to help other people.” Tania’s son says the trip motivates him.

Tania is a college graduate, has owned her own business, and has sky dived more than 40 times.

“She can do all these crazy things,” said Michael. “She inspires me in ways I can’t even describe.”

Click here to donate to Tania’s cause.

Click here to track her travels.