Gavin Mogan

Born: 12/14/1969

Injured: 09/01/2008

Injury: Parkinson's Disease

"'Gav!!!! Hey brother! Its Vobora…I have an opportunity I want to present to you.'

That last sentence. It lifted hundreds of pounds from my shoulders. Instantly.

See, I’ve spent the last several years knocking on doors, hitting up inboxes, and channeling energy to create something of value. Opportunities have been slim to none.

I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) ten years ago. Six months after diagnosis, my wife, Amy, gave birth to our second child. Adapting is mandatory, continuous. Status quo in constant flow.

The adaptability so familiar to those with degenerative disease, disability, marginalization, etc., is much less common in those evaluating us.

I respect this disease. I don’t fear it. Unfortunately, others do. Others fear investing in me. Not everyone, of course. But it’s hardly only me affected. Unknowns seem risky. Sames feels comfortable. Yet, the stagnation of comfort can’t survive.

Despite shortcomings, I believe I am still valuable, in spite of, very much because of, PD. Improbable? Perhaps on its surface. Delving deeper reveals substance.

Few people drill-down like David Vobora. Even fewer can envision higher. I’ve witnessed this ability to analyze/visualize/actualize for three years now. Dave and team collect society’s broken, cast-off stones and refine them into polished diamonds. They are alchemists of people.

Now I have the opportunity to reignite my base form - body, mind, and soul. I’m determined to leverage this gift into opportunities for others needing a chance to shine. Parkinson’s has opened my eyes to inequity of opportunity.

The vision of me climbing this ladder of opportunity alone is illusion. Opportunity such as that provided by ATF results from my standing on the shoulders of countless others. 

As such, my obligation will be to stack others on my shoulders - a cost that will be my privilege to pay and, this time, brother, a load I will be well equipped to handle!" - Gavin Mogan