Bill Der

Summit Challenge: Mount Kilimanjaro
  • My Goal:
  • $15,000
  • Raised So Far:
  • $16,717
  • # of Donations:
  • 26
$16717 of $15000 goal
+
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UPDATE: This fundraiser was a smashing success, with over $15,000 raised for individuals with Down syndrome. Thank you to all who supported this worthy cause. Please click here for a story from Burnaby Now on Bill and Spencer's Kilimanjaro adventure.

Over the past five years, I have been climbing the Grouse Grind Trail every weekend with a few friends, and on one specific weekend I came across a fellow Grinder who was carrying a thirty-pound backpack. We began talking about climbing mountains and I found out that she was training in preparation to climb seven mountains in Asia. She suggested I try climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro.

The idea stuck. The more I thought about it, the more it appealed to me. I had wanted to do a significant symbolic event to mark a change in my life’s direction as well as pay tribute to my wife of 35 years, who had brought Spencer and me to the pinnacle of life with her love and self-sacrifice.

I want to climb Kilimanjaro and leave something behind of hers to thank her. When we descend from the mountain, we will carry her in our hearts into a different future where we will drive life as opposed to being driven by life. Another goal is to move into the future with a focus on spending our energy and resources to build people and help others to reach their summit of life, just as others have helped me to overcome my own obstacles battling the eye disease glaucoma.

With this focus, the movie Pay It Forward came to mind while I was pondering this new direction in life. Eugene, an elementary school teacher (played by Kevin Spacey), challenged his students to make the world a better place. Trevor (a student play by Haley Joel Osment) came up with the idea that if one person helped someone and that person helped someone else, it would make the world a better place. Trevor showed the depth of charity in our human spirit even to the point of losing one’s life.

Trevor reminds me of Sam. Who is Sam? He is the special son of Shawn and Rachel Ostheimer, who shares his love without reservation to anyone and everyone with his wide smile and open arms. Find out more about Sam here.

The Answer Company, where I’ve worked for 15+ years, has been a tremendous support to me and my family over the years as I struggled with adjusting to my vision deterioration due to glaucoma, and the recent passing of my wife, Lana (February 1, 2015). One of the major charities The Answer Company supports is the Down Syndrome Research Foundation. In gratitude, and in the spirit of Pay It Forward, Spencer and I will be supporting the Down Syndrome Research Foundation as we climb.

Please join Spencer and me as we ascend to the top of Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain in Africa, as both a symbolic tribute to Lana, as well as “paying it forward” to help others who have helped me. All donations through this page are tax deductible, and greatly appreciated.

We will be blogging as we go. Follow our adventure here!

Thank you…
Bill (The Blind Guy who thinks he can see) and Spencer Der (The Guide)

PS. Yes, I am visually impaired. I have found that the more we focus on others' needs and help each other to overcome obstacles in life, the less our own disabilities become disabilities. So, please join me as we take this step to a new life direction moving forward.

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My Story
The Cause
Bill Der is fundraising for General Donations benefiting D.S.R.F. Down Syndrome Research Foundation.

UPDATE: This fundraiser was a smashing success, with over $15,000 raised for individuals with Down syndrome. Thank you to all who supported this worthy cause. Please click here for a story from Burnaby Now on Bill and Spencer's Kilimanjaro adventure.

Over the past five years, I have been climbing the Grouse Grind Trail every weekend with a few friends, and on one specific weekend I came across a fellow Grinder who was carrying a thirty-pound backpack. We began talking about climbing mountains and I found out that she was training in preparation to climb seven mountains in Asia. She suggested I try climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro.

The idea stuck. The more I thought about it, the more it appealed to me. I had wanted to do a significant symbolic event to mark a change in my life’s direction as well as pay tribute to my wife of 35 years, who had brought Spencer and me to the pinnacle of life with her love and self-sacrifice.

I want to climb Kilimanjaro and leave something behind of hers to thank her. When we descend from the mountain, we will carry her in our hearts into a different future where we will drive life as opposed to being driven by life. Another goal is to move into the future with a focus on spending our energy and resources to build people and help others to reach their summit of life, just as others have helped me to overcome my own obstacles battling the eye disease glaucoma.

With this focus, the movie Pay It Forward came to mind while I was pondering this new direction in life. Eugene, an elementary school teacher (played by Kevin Spacey), challenged his students to make the world a better place. Trevor (a student play by Haley Joel Osment) came up with the idea that if one person helped someone and that person helped someone else, it would make the world a better place. Trevor showed the depth of charity in our human spirit even to the point of losing one’s life.

Trevor reminds me of Sam. Who is Sam? He is the special son of Shawn and Rachel Ostheimer, who shares his love without reservation to anyone and everyone with his wide smile and open arms. Find out more about Sam here.

The Answer Company, where I’ve worked for 15+ years, has been a tremendous support to me and my family over the years as I struggled with adjusting to my vision deterioration due to glaucoma, and the recent passing of my wife, Lana (February 1, 2015). One of the major charities The Answer Company supports is the Down Syndrome Research Foundation. In gratitude, and in the spirit of Pay It Forward, Spencer and I will be supporting the Down Syndrome Research Foundation as we climb.

Please join Spencer and me as we ascend to the top of Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain in Africa, as both a symbolic tribute to Lana, as well as “paying it forward” to help others who have helped me. All donations through this page are tax deductible, and greatly appreciated.

We will be blogging as we go. Follow our adventure here!

Thank you…
Bill (The Blind Guy who thinks he can see) and Spencer Der (The Guide)

PS. Yes, I am visually impaired. I have found that the more we focus on others' needs and help each other to overcome obstacles in life, the less our own disabilities become disabilities. So, please join me as we take this step to a new life direction moving forward.

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D.S.R.F. Down Syndrome Research Foundation

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