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!
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.
A DREAM RIDE
May The Force Be With You All,
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