Life did not only change in many ways for Tamara Gordon when she was involved in a serious accident while on a high school downhill skiing trip a decade ago.
Her mother, Marcia Gordon, was also impacted by the tragic event.
The young girl sustained spinal cord and brachial injuries that have left her paralyzed from the waist down and without the use of her dominant left hand.
Despite the obstacles, the Markham resident is engaged in numerous community activities. She’s a peer support volunteer with the Canadian Paraplegic Association, spending many hours with young people who have suffered spinal cord injuries. In addition, she spearheads a teen volunteer program and tutoring service and organizes free back-to-school barbecues, Christmas banquets and Canada Day celebrations and presents motivational speeches, always reminding young people to strive to overcome barriers they may face in life.
At last Saturday’s annual Christmas banquet, her mother was presented with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal by Member of Provincial Parliament, Michael Coteau.
“This is someone who has stood by her daughter’s side every step of the way and she should be commended,” said Coteau, who is the MPP for Don Valley East.
Prior to the accident, Marcia Gordon was an active volunteer in her community.
“I still do a lot of that work but as you can appreciate much of my focus has been on Tammy,” she said. “I have been there for her in school, helping to take notes and also assisting with so many things she cannot do on her own now. It has been very demanding, but I enjoy being by her side.”
Last May, Prince Charles presented a Diamond Jubilee Medal to Tamara at Queen’s Park.
“That was a special occasion for Tammy and I remember the Prince praising me for the job I was doing with her,” said Gordon, who migrated to Canada from Jamaica in 1982.
By RON FANFAIR