AbilityVoice - A BraunAbility Blog

A Rampvan helps Chris and Rachelle Begin Their Journey

Posted by on Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

Rampvan At A Wedding

On Friday The Braun Corporation and Toyota Mobility arranged a very special donation to a deserving young couple. Rachelle Friedman, a 23-year-old young woman who was paralyzed as a result of an accident during her bachelorette party last year, finally exchanged vows with her longtime boyfriend Chris Chapman. As the newlyweds left their wedding reception, Braun and Toyota surprised them with a wedding gift they hadn't included on their registry – a Toyota Rampvan XT. The two were married in a beautiful morning ceremony, and a country-themed reception followed at a charming location nestled in the rolling hills of Fearrington, North Carolina.  As the wedding DJ played the last song of the afternoon, he asked the guests to line the brick path outside and led the couple outside for an amazing send-off to their fairytale wedding. Waiting at the end of the path was the wheelchair van under a white drape and topped with a huge red bow. "Oh my goodness!" exclaimed Rachelle repeatedly as the accessible van was unveiled and the ramp unfolded to meet the bride. "This is amazing…AMAZING." Needless to say, Rachelle and Chris were shocked. The two were supposed to get married last summer, until a playful push into a pool by one of Rachelle's bridesmaids during her bachelorette party paralyzed the bride-to-be. Instead of celebrating their marriage, the couple worked through intensive care, rehabilitation and eventually settled into their new home outside of Raleigh, North Carolina. Chris never lost sight of their future lives together. "I told her I'd always be by her side," said the middle school science teacher. "She'd have to try harder than that to get rid of me." When BraunAbility first heard Rachelle's story, we worked with her local dealer, Van Products in Raleigh, to loan Rachelle an accessible vehicle while she planned her wedding. Until that point, her mother had been carrying Rachelle by piggyback to get her in and out of her compact SUV. Having a wheelchair van has helped Rachelle see past her disability and has opened the door to post-accident possibilities. She has since become a representative of the Colours wheelchair team, is active in quad-rugby and hopes to devote her time to paralysis advocacy groups in the near future. One of the very first items on her to-do list after the honeymoon? Learning to drive on her own. "And I WILL be driving this van…not just riding in it," she told the BraunAbility crew after receiving the gift.  When she's ready for that step of the journey, she'll have a lifetime of support and service from Van Products behind her. Some video highlights of the wedding were featured during the Today Show Monday morning, and the couple will be interviewed once they're back from their honeymoon.

The media continues to cover this touching story, including Yahoo News and Autoblog, with more expected as the couple returns from their honeymoon. We love happy beginnings. Congratulations to Chris and Rachelle on their beautiful wedding, and more importantly, on their incredible commitment. It's just the beginning of a life-long relationship with each other and with BraunAbility!

View Additional Disclosures

All illustrations, descriptions and specifications found on this website are based on the latest information available. The Braun Corporation and BraunAbility reserve the right to make changes at any time without notice and disclaim any liability resulting from the use of the information found herein.

Starting MSRP excludes destination freight, tax, title, license, registration, document, processing & handling fees. Price based on MSRP base model and does not include optional equipment not included on those models. Destination charges and actual dealer prices may vary. Consult your dealer for actual price and complete details. All pricing shown is in US dollars.

Download Your Free Ability Kit

If you’re ready to learn more, download an Ability Kit today!
Your Ability Kit includes:

  • Full-line side-entry wheelchair van brochure
  • Full-line rear-entry wheelchair van brochure
Required Fields*

Close ×
Close ×

Required Fields*

  • State/Province
  •   BraunAbility Owner
  •   I'm Shopping
  •   General Inquiry

  • The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) can be found by looking at the dashboard on the driver's side of the vehicle. It may also be on your registration or insurance card. If you cannot find it, leave this field blank.

  • The Model & Serial Number can be found on the label on the arm of your wheelchair lift or on the pump housing.
  • Select the BraunAbility products you'd like information about:

Sign Up for Our Newsletter

Your BraunAbility newsletter will include:

  • Sales and incentives
  • News and announcements
  • Mobility topics & customer stories
Required Fields*

Close ×

Monthly Payment Calculator

Close ×

Monthly Payment Calculator

From $[xxx]/mo.*

BraunAbility can handle all of your vehicle financing needs with competitive interest rates and custom-structured programs and flexible financing terms up to XX months.

*New XXXX BraunAbility XXXXXXXX. Monthly payment amount advertised is based on $XX,XXX at X.X% for XX months. All monthly payments are subject to approved credit and XX% down payment. Not all applicants will qualify. Starting MSRP excludes tax, tag, registration, title, destination/delivery charge, service contracts, and dealer fees. Monthly payment is based upon estimated selling price of the vehicle in U.S. dollars and does not include applicable cash back, rebates, and net trade-in allowance. Programs are subject to change or termination without notice and residency restrictions may apply to some programs. Consult your local BraunAbility dealer for actual price and complete details. Advertised wheelchair accessible vehicle is subject to prior sale.

Close ×

Read More

Close ×

Why can't my page be found? was recently redesigned to make the site easier to use and navigate, more informational for our shoppers, helpful to owners, and fun to use.

There may have been a page you had hoped to revisit but has been moved in the process. We have done our best to redirect you to the correct page. If you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, choose from the options below or call us if you would like personalized assistance:

Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM EST

Close ×

Please Read & Acknowledge

Close ×