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The FENX Project: A Star Wars Fan Overcomes The Odds

Posted by xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx on September 29, 2010 at 10:44 AM CST


Here is an amazing story from The ForceCast mailbag about a Star Wars fan who, much like the clone Ninety-Nine from the season 3 premiere of The Clone Wars, has overcome huge obstacles to live his life to the fullest on Capital Hill!

ForceCast Crew:

Greetings from Washington DC! I've recently been introduced to the ForceCast (thanks to podcasting and mobile tech) despite being a fan of the Galaxy Far Far Away for as far back as I can remember. I'm finishing up the first Clone Wars Season Three Roundtable as I type this; loved the episodes and the Roundtable. I have a special affinity to the character of Ninety-Nine, because he reminds me of me. I'm 28 and have struggled with Cerebral Palsy my entire life. I am/was a preemie kid and spent a portion of my childhood in and out of the hospital and might have not amounted to much if it wasn't for family and friends. Presently, I work on Capitol Hill on policy and have been privileged to have a "center ice seat" for much of what's happened in Congress and in DC for the last 5 years. I'm so thankful for the portrayal of Ninety-Nine as a person, an individual, and WORTH SOMETHING. I was especially interested in his expanded mental capacity to remember "all [his] brothers" - it's much akin to my own experience where physical appearance and ability is somewhat affected, but mental capacity and speech isn't. All that said, you guys have my thanks and I am becoming a great fan of the ForceCast.

To give a reference point to all this, I've added a link to a story that
NBC Nightly News did on my special transportation and I; the closest I will ever get to piloting a starfighter.


May The Force Be With You All,

Aaron Welty

AMAZING! Thank you so much for writing us, Aaron. You are truly inspiring! When I wrote back to Aaron thank him for sharing his incredible story, I mentioned that his mode of transportation, The FENX, looks like a Jedi Starfighter. Click on the link to watch the video and you will see what I mean. Aaron wrote back:

There have been SO many jokes and references over the last year or so about The FENX and Star Wars (blaster cannons, ion cannons above the canopy, needing to put a Rebel Alliance StarBird on the front - which I may do). When my Dad presented it to me I asked him if he set the "steering wheel" to look like a TIE Fighter control yoke (on purpose) and he just smiled at me (because he got me into Star Wars as a youngling). Like my dad says in the interview, the whole project has been a blast for us both and generated a lot of attention in both the mobility world and the enviro world - at least in DC circles.

To learn more about Aaron and The FENX project, visit his blog, The Adventures of Aaron The FENX


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