By Jennifer McGraw

MODESTO (CBS13) – For Tommy Loredo, it’s no fun getting stuck.

“This is what I have to deal with every day,” the 9-year-old said as he tried to get his wheelchair through the sand.

Luckily, Tommy has some capabilities past the wheels.

“Ugh!!” he said as mom helped him get from the chair to the jungle gym at Beyer Park.

Tommy was born with club feet and has had a series of surgeries to correct severe scoliosis.

“He has arthrogryposis which mostly affects his lower half and his joints,” said his mom Rachel Loredo.

She said her son has gone through so much in his 9 years of life, she just wants him to have every opportunity.

“Not only will I be able to enjoy it, but other kids will too. So it’s fair,” Tommy said.

That is why she’s campaigning to turn this jungle gym into an all-inclusive park.

“He is just so strong and so brave that he’s my true inspiration for wanting to bring something like this to Modesto,” Rachel said.

And the cool part, it’s not just for kids.

“Adults have disabilities and they have children and they want to be able to play with their children,” said Matt Tilford of Modesto who is also on four wheels.

The sand at the jungle gym that’s at least 30 years old isn’t the only issue, but getting on the swings is virtually impossible. The new playground will allow people to strap their wheelchair right in and fly.

“That’s a really cool thing where some kids aren’t able to get out and it takes a lot of time to get out of their chair,” said Tilford.

It will be twice the size with integrated hills to wheel up and slide down. Including several other accessible amenities.

But the only problem is the cost.

The proposed Awesome Spot Playground at Beyer Park will take at least $2.5 million to build.

“It is providing places for recreation for the entire community,” said the landscape architect for the project, Chad Kennedy.

They’ve applied for grants and are trying to gain support from local companies.

Tommy just hopes it happens soon, so he doesn’t miss out.

“If you build this park, it will be a big help to the community,” he said.

To become a partner in the Awesome Spot Playground you can contact the City of Modesto.

They hope to break ground next year.


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