Over the years, we’ve heard from countless people how our Entervans and Rampvans have changed their lives for the better, including recently when BraunAbility helps a teacher. Whether it’s being able to get out and do the simple things in life like going grocery shopping, or traveling across the country to visit a new grandchild, hearing these stories makes me realize what a privilege it is to work for a company like BraunAbility.
In 2007, I went up to Dowagiac, Michigan with a video crew in tow to pay a visit to Ron and Bonnie LaTourette. The LaTourette’s graciously allowed us to set up way too many lights and cameras in their home to capture their story – they even allowed us to follow them to school where Bonnie teaches art and Ron helps tutor students in math in the classroom next door. Seeing Ron in the classroom, you could tell he was truly doing what he loved. In fact, it was hard to tell who was more enthusiastic about being there – Ron, or his students (who, by the way, were thrilled about the cameras and their chance at stardom!).
Next, we were off in the Entervan again so Ron could meet some old friends for lunch. Only problem was, the restaurant that Ron arranged to have us shoot in was closed! Making lemonade out of lemons, we went across the street, and Ron was happy to find out the Chinese restaurant he’d never been to was wheelchair accessible. Problem solved!
One thing that stood out when talking to the LaTourettes is how much they truly enjoyed each other’s company. Bonnie talks about how, after they first got their wheelchair van, she and Ron could finally share face-to-face conversations again as they were driving. Before the Entervan they owned a full-size van with a wheelchair lift, and Ron would ride behind Bonnie – usually going to sleep because he couldn’t see out of the van’s windows and couldn’t really carry on a conversation. With the Entervan, they were able to remove the front passenger seat and Ron can now ride up front in his power wheelchair next to Bonnie – and offer driving tips like any good husband should!
I hope you liked watching the LaTourette’s story – you can also see it on our website here, along with several other customer stories. If you’re looking into buying a handicap accessible van, I hope that these stories will help you visualize how a BraunAbility van might fit into your lifestyle. Please let us know what you think by commenting below!