A man kayaks on the Ohio River to raise awareness for Parkinson’s disease


CINCINNATI (WXIX) – Over the next two weeks, a man will kayak down the Ohio River to raise money for a charity he says will cure a disease that affects 10 million people worldwide – Parkinson’s disease.

Along the banks of the Ohio River, if you wait long enough, you’ll see all kinds of people enjoying the river. From barges to boaters and even kayakers, but for Taylor Dewey, kayaking the entire Ohio River is for a cause close to her heart.

Dewey continues his trip down the Ohio River to Fernbank Park on Tuesday. He started this six-week trip in Pittsburgh 20 days ago.

It will finish in Cairo, Illinois, in a few weeks after covering 981 miles.

Dewey uses a water pump that purifies water from the Ohio River to make it drinkable.

Dewey says every year that he plans an adventure while on leave from the Navy. He kayaked other rivers and even cycled the perimeter of the United States.

This year, the challenge has a personal meaning.

“I primarily fundraise for the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research as part of Team Fox,” says Dewey. “Parkinson’s disease is a disease that affects millions of people around the world and, like many other families, my family was not spared. My grandmother tragically lost her life to Parkinson’s disease about a dozen years ago.

Dewey has weathered storms along the river and had tough days between weather and physical exhaustion, but he says those challenges pale in comparison to battling Parkinson’s disease.

“[Kayaking] is physically difficult and very physically demanding,” says Dewey, “but it’s nothing compared to what people have to go through on a daily basis to cope with Parkinson’s disease.

If you would like to donate to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, you can follow this link.

Dewey set a goal of $2,000 for this trip. He has already surpassed that goal. He just hopes the money he raises will make a difference in the lives of people battling Parkinson’s disease.

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