Following is a letter received by one of the local realty companies that was forwarded to the town. I am really proud to be part of a “community” that made a vacation exceptionally meaningful for this family. Special thanks to everyone that had a hand in this.
My son is very ill and because of his declining health and the amount of time/effort it takes to get to the beach (It takes us 12 very long/hard hours) and because of that I knew this would be his last trip down. Most beaches are not accessible (Condos nor the beach) but, last year we found Emerald Isle and came down for a couple days to scope it out. This was our first trip anywhere in 12 years due to his health and lack of access. Fast forward to last week. He was able to make the trip one last time and because of the kindness/generosity/accessibility we were able to get him ALL THE WAY down to the ocean’s edge. He has very limited vision but loves to smell/feel/taste the ocean. I watched with tears streaming down as my son sat for 1 hour in no distress at all enjoying his favorite place to be. Thank you so much Emerald Isle Fire Department for loaning us the beach wheelchair and allowing him to use it after dark. Thank you Emerald Isle Police Department for keeping the public access open beyond normal closing time so he could enjoy the ocean and thank you Emerald Isle for making the island/condo (Queens Court)/beach so accessible for my son. Thank you medic home care for setting up all his life support equipment/oxygen/medical needs for us prior to our arrival and for taking care of him while we were there. Thank you maintenance for coming at 4:30 a.m. when we staggered in to no hot water. Thank you to my son’s nurse for coming along to help care for him. From the bottom of our hearts Jophie and I thank you. I will never forget last week......
Emerald Isle is proud to be known as a handicap friendly/accessible beach. The Western Ocean Regional Access and the Eastern Ocean Regional Access both have ramp accesses to the beach. The Fire Department has beach wheelchairs available for daily use free of charge and they are heavily used and enjoyed by many.
The ramps are not only used by wheelchair bound individuals, but many others that I refer to as mobility impaired. That can be someone recovering from surgery, someone advancing in age and not as nimble as they used to be, and similar situations. We would love to have more handicap accessible locations, but because of the slope requirements for the ramp, a lot of space is required and there are not many locations where they can be accommodated. However, with all of our accesses and other projects in town, we pay special attention to trying to make them as friendly as possible for mobility impaired individuals.
The next time you see a mobility impaired person, see if there is something you can do to help them. Rest assured your effort will be much appreciated.
I hope you are having a great summer.