Visually impaired, 100 km to walk and all heart

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Galloway begins journey in support of Truro girl

SPRINGHILL – It’s obvious Dave Galloway isn’t blind.

Dave Galloway of Springhill began his walk in support of Georgie Langille of Monday with his support guide Jeanie Maie Smith. The Truro girl was born with a rare congenital disorder, making her both blind and deaf.

Christopher Gooding – The Citizen-Record

As Monday morning’s winds picked up, his vision would come flashing back to him. Cars parked in asphalt parking lot. The faces of family and friends surrounding him. The red and blue lights of a police car.

All it took was a little wind to blow at the corner of a piece of paper secured over his goggles to recreate the world of being visually impaired and he could see again.

Georgia Langille, daughter of Kristen and Fraser of Truro, however, doesn’t have that option. Born deaf and blind, Georgia has a rare congenital disorder called glycosylation type 1A. When Galloway, who went to school with Kristen, learned of the difficult world the family will experience he decided to raise awareness of the disorder and raise money to help the Langilles with the specialized equipment and regular travel to the IWK in Halifax by organizing a walk from Springhill to Truro over the course of five days, with his vision impaired.

“Today is really our test day,” Galloway said from the Dr. Carson and Marion Murray Community Centre. “We’ll get to see how our support and emergency vehicles work.”

President of the Springhill Lions Club, the service club has played a leading role in helping Galloway prepare for this walk. His guide is fellow Lion Jeanie Maie Smith, who will travel the same distance as Galloway by assisting him with his direction. Fittingly, the Lions have a mandate to assist the visually impaired dating back to 1925 when Helen Keller called on Lions to become "knights of the blind.”

As one of those knights, Galloway isn’t charging into the darkness. He has 100 km to travel, and he’s set a pace that is according to being visually impaired.

“I have five destinations: Oxford, then the Thompson Road area, then Wentworth and Debert. The Tidal Bore Inn is my Friday stop and then Saturday morning, at 9:30 a.m., I go to the Best Western in Truro for the Lions convention.”

With an extra piece of tape to finally strip him of his vision, albeit temporarily, Galloway and Smith left Springhill with a police escort in front of them and the cheers of family and friends from behind.

Online, Galloway’s awareness and fundraiser, Opening Eyes For Baby Georgia, can be found on Facebook.

Organizations: Springhill Lions Club, Tidal Bore Inn, Best Western

Geographic location: Truro, Halifax, Oxford Thompson Road Debert

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