Lynchburg Fourth Grader Gets New Racing Wheelchair With Help From Community

Picture taken by Jerry Price

Lynchburg, VA - Trinity Bowling has been in a wheelchair all her life, but that hasn't kept her from pursuing her love of racing.

The 10-year-old girl first started taking part in local races in December, and after rallying community support, a group was able to buy her a new racing wheelchair.

Trinity tested out her new chair Saturday at Coleman's Run, a 5K race in Lynchburg that raises autism awareness and supports local charities.

You can't blame Trinity for showing off her new ride.

"It's got wheels for off road and on road, it's got free wheel part to it, it's bigger and it makes me go faster," she said pointing to all the new features.

For months, the fourth grader was racing with a regular wheelchair. Her long-time nurse at Tomahawk Elementary School and running partner Susan Anderson has been right behind her.

After Trinity's first race, Jerry Price got involved.

"I just thought it was a good idea and some of the other race directors, that she had a more sturdy chair to run in the races," he said.

Price spearheaded the fundraising -- setting up a donation website. Anderson jumped right in.

"Through the neighborhood and Tomahawk Elementary School and the community.we raised about $4,000 in less than a month," said Anderson.

Gary Morris from GME Medical Supply in Lynchburg fitted Trinity and ordered the chair.

He says the new chair is more stable, easier to push and a lot faster. It will also fit Trinity as she grows, so she can use it for four or five years.

All who worked to get the racing chair say they are grateful for the community's support.

"Just overwhelming. So much giving and people just wanting to jump in and help out and just see her go," said Anderson.

"Because they wanted to help a little girl in need, you know? So it's a good feeling," said Price.

Trinity's smile is proof it was worth it, and this is just the beginning.

"There is no stopping Trinity," said Anderson, laughing.

Trinity's 11th birthday is Monday. Anderson says Trinity eventually wants to do the New York City Marathon. But for now, they'll start with a half marathon.