By Dixon Hayes
MUNFORD, AL (WBRC) - A Munford pastor will push one of his church members 15 miles Saturday for a special fundraiser.
Rev. Tim Thomas says he's developed a special bond with 37-year-old William Gower, a man who was born with cerebral palsy and has never walked. He says the two run together every day, with Thomas pushing Gower.
Thomas calls Gower a "very unselfish individual, never asked for anything, has an upbeat spirit, never walked a day in his life but he's experiencing a freedom when we run that you and I will never know."
Gower's mother, however, is in need of a new, specially equipped van in which she can drive her son around. Their current 1986 Ford Econoline 150 is said to be on "its last legs," according to his mother, who has to pop the hood to start it up.
So to raise money, Thomas will push Gower all the way from the Jacksonville State Trooper post to Oxford, a total of 15 miles. Team Gower, as they're called, will be met by a big reception at the Chick-Fil-A on Highway 21, where people can donate money.
"We just feel like William's worth it," says Thomas. "He's a special man, and we want to encourage special people to do something special for this young man."
He and Gower's mother, Barbara Fox, say William Gower is active in his church and his neighborhood, even visits a shut-in neighbor on a regular basis. He even has his own parking spot at the Talladega County church, marked for "Sir William Gower." Fox says her son was born with CP due to a birth-related injury, and wasn't expected to live as much as two days.
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