Rick, this speech is for you, with our love and admiration:
Twenty five years have passed since you started out on your courageous adventure around the world to try to make the world a better place for injured persons to live, and you have succeeded. You have opened many doors that were closed tight for injured persons.
You have shown people that though the body is injured, the mind becomes stronger and there are so many jobs available for a strong mind.
We are all so proud of you and your accomplishments.
When a person is injured as you were, God comforts you in ways you least expect, if your eyes and heart are open to receive it.
I, Rick, am your mother and I am so proud of you.
I sat quietly when you went around the world and worried as moms do, but I needn’t have worried. You came through with shining colours.
When you came in to B.C. Place, you made those in wheelchairs so proud of you. It was wonderful, and British Columbians did a wonderful job to welcome you home, and I want to say we salute Williams Lake for all they have done to help you, Rick, to accomplish your goal. The little Cariboo town that cried and recovered beautifully.
So carry on, my son. I’m sure your journey isn’t over yet. People need your caring finger and so do we.
Love you Rick, so much, and God loves you too.
Editor’s note: This speech, provided to the Tribune from Joan Gibson, was read out by Gibson at a recent luncheon when Rick Hansen was in Williams Lake.