Wheel:Life hopes you’ll join us in giving a warm welcome to our new Comfort Medical Ambassadors: Dale Spencer, Margarita Elizondo, Chris Salas, and ElleJay Volpe! You’ll be hearing from a Comfort Ambassador every month here on Wheel:Life through a new series called Comfort Conversations.
Our new Comfort Medical Ambassador program is designed to help our readers connect with people who have rolled a mile in your shoes.
Our guest columnists will share their thoughts, perspective, and advice on a variety of topics and questions that we often receive from Wheel:Life readers.
You already know how helpful it can be to connect with like-minded friends. We see that daily in the pictures you post, like the one used here as the cover of this story — it came from the 2016 Get Out, Enjoy Life event.
That’s why we are thankful that we’re able to offer this new conversational series, because of the support of Comfort Medical! Wheel:Life joined the Comfort Medical family in April, and we are expanding our free resource programs as a result of our new partnership.
Learn more about the Wheel:Life-Comfort Medical relationship here. But first, we’d love to introduce you to your new friends — the Comfort Ambassador representatives!
Meet the Comfort Medical Ambassadors
Dale Spencer: Dale Spencer was leading the life of an average college student when at the age of 20, an unforeseen injury changed his life forever. Left paralyzed, Dale had to adapt to new ways of doing everyday tasks, getting around, interacting with people, finishing college and entering the workforce in the Chicago area.
Dale has triumphed over adversity and risen to the top of his profession. He continues to give back to his community, grow and take on new challenges. By using simple techniques to keep his fear in check and his mind focused, Dale has been able to achieve his life goals. Now he is sharing his experiences and helping others to attain their goals and ambitions.
As an author, FEAR expert and International Keynote Speaker, Dale takes his audiences on a journey of real-life experiences and revelations. Together they identify obstacles, both professional and personal, which are common roadblocks to achieving success.
By reintroducing us to the skills we already have, Dale is able to illuminate the road to success.
Dale says, “My Mission Statement is to help as many people as possible to overcome their fears so they can experience success and happiness in every aspect of their lives, and most importantly, embrace their journey.”
Contact him via www.dalespencer.com, www.facebook.com/DaleJSpencer, Twitter Handle @DSpencerFearNot, Instagram: @dspencerfearnot, YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNvC4SJJPNhEUZ1PiRfkE3A
Margarita Elizondo: Margarita Elizondo is a motivational speaker, entrepreneur, producer/host of Wheel Talk Wheel Issues radio show, model, author and an ambassador for the Los Angeles Abilities Expo. She was paralyzed in 2006 after an intruder broke into her home.
Now, a single mother of three and grandmother, she pursues a degree in Communication at Grossmont Community College and works for Axia Management where she designed a wireless phone service for seniors and individuals with disabilities.
As Ms. Wheelchair California 2013, she is a strong advocate in the disability community and volunteers for numerous nonprofits. You can follow her @Ms_Hotwheels on Twitter and Instagram, or reach her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/margarita.marguetelizondo or through www.margaritaelizondo.com.
Margarita will be contributing the first article in our Comfort Conversations series on the topic of power wheelchairs, so stay tuned!
Chris Salas: A San Antonio native, Chris was born with the gift of gab. He found his niche as a successful salesman until his life took a turn in 1997. A self-inflicted victim of drunk driving, Chris is a C5 quadriplegic. Warm Springs Rehabilitation Hospital helped Chris mend, both physically and emotionally. Speared on by his own personal growth, Chris began volunteering at Warm Springs as a transportation provider for the elderly and disabled.
Chris then progressed into peer mentoring and continued his path of helping others grow by establishing a non-profit, Rolling Inspiration, in 2010.
Today, Rolling Inspiration is the largest SCI peer support group in South Texas and is recognized as an official chapter of United Spinal.
Chris also serves as an official peer mentor for the Christopher Reeve Foundation, as well as a guest professor for two of the local colleges. He provides a real-world application to the information future therapists have learned and will use on patients. You can reach Chris at Chris@rolling-inspiration.org or http://www.rolling-inspiration.org.
ElleJay Volpe: Previously a museum educator in science and technology, 28-year-old ElleJay Volpe is passionate about information and empowerment. As progressive disease forced her to take a new perspective, she became increasingly aware of the disability community and advocacy issues. As she found community, she discovered a new way to learn and teach.
In 2010, she earned her B.S. in Natural Science with minors in Chemistry and Mathematics. Among other conditions, she has a rare, congenital vascular disease called Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome that immediately affects the deeper muscular tissues and the lymphatic system in her right in the form of tumor-like malformations. This causes mobility issues, extreme, constant pain, circulation issues throughout her body, and carries life-threatening risks like aneurysm, deep vein thrombosis, and pulmonary embolism.
Over the years, ElleJay noticed there weren’t many visually appealing or very innovative mobility and adaptive products that were available mainstream or in the common consciousness. She believes that in order for the disability community to thrive, we need to create our own sanctuaries and seek out our own beauty and function. This was the inspiration for Frill-Ability, a website she created where adaptivity and style meet harmoniously.
“Make Good with Your Ability” is the sign-off you’ll see in her posts and also the motto for Frill-Ability.
It’s a reminder to create something wonderful with whatever you have because whatever you have is definitely wonderful.
Find ElleJay at www.frill-ability.com, www.instagram.com/frill_ability, www.facebook.com/frillabilitylife, www.youtube.com/c/frillabilityofficial, www.pinterest.com/frillability, and www.twitter.com/frill_ability.
Have a question for one of the Comfort Ambassadors? Let us know! Contact us here.
Or, find a peer support group near you using our helpful reference guide!
Comfort Medical delivers the leading brands of catheters and ostomy products to customers who use wheelchairs nationwide.
Wheel:Life is now part of the Comfort Medical family! With more than 26,000 followers on social media, we served more than 100,000 website visitors with lifestyle resources in 2015. To help us expand our community impact, we have become part of the Comfort Medical organization.
Thanks to our relationship, we are able serve even more people who use wheelchairs with lifestyle resources, helpful products, and services.
“Comfort Medical is excited to be able to engage more closely with our customers through the ambassador program. This will give us an opportunity to have a more personal touch and be better able to understand our customers’ needs and desires. We think this engagement will only lead to better service, more opportunities to assist in the marketplace, and a stronger connection within the community we serve,” says Jeff McDaniel, Vice President of Marketing for Comfort Medical.
Comfort Medical provides an extensive selection of name brand catheter and ostomy supplies to thousands of customers nationwide.
Their attention to detail, unmatched customer service, and dedication to helping customers live a happier, healthier life are just a few of the many reasons Comfort is one of the fastest growing catheter and ostomy supply companies in the nation.
If you have any questions about your medical supply needs, click here to get in touch with a Comfort Medical specialist!
Note: The Comfort Conversations articles are for informational use only and are not intended to be construed as medical advice. Ask your doctor about issues related to your health and medical needs.