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Fundraiser to Buy All-Terrain Chair for Injured Oswego Marine

Gary Awalt of North Aurora is hoping to raise the $11,800 he needs to buy an Action Trackchair for Oswego Marine Kyle Moser, who lost both legs in Afghanistan last year.

Before the attack in Afghanistan last year that cost him both his legs and part of his right hand, Oswego Marine Kyle Moser enjoyed being in the great outdoors. And if North Aurora resident Gary Awalt is successful, Moser will be back hunting, fishing and hiking before too long.

Awalt, a special needs bus driver for School District 308, is friends with Moser and his family. And he thinks he’s found just the thing to get the 20-year-old Moser back into the outdoor life.

It’s called an Action Trackchair, and it’s billed as “the ultimate in off-road wheelchairs,” according to the company website. It’s able to cover virtually any terrain, thanks to an innovative design and seven-and-a-half-foot tank treads on either side.

It was designed by Tim Swenson of Minnesota, whose son Jeff is in a wheelchair, and was created to help disabled people enjoy the freedom of hiking, fishing and other outdoor activities, according to the website.

Awalt saw the Trackchair at an outdoor expo event, and immediately thought of Moser, he said. And when Moser and his father joined him to check out the chair, and Kyle took a ride in it, the impact was immediate, Awalt said.

“He had a ball,” Awalt said. “He had a smile on his face that wouldn’t quit.”

So Awalt has been trying since then to raise money to buy one of the chairs for Moser. It will cost about $11,800 – a discounted price, but one that includes all the options – and Awalt is hoping a series of upcoming fundraisers will help him collect that amount.

He already started, driving a borrowed Trackchair around PrairieFest last weekend and asking for donations, and raised $1,800, he said. And he’s taken in more since then.

He’ll be appearing three times over the next two months, hoping to bring in more. First up is a customer appreciation day at , 3201 Orchard Road in Oswego, on June 29. After that, he’ll be seen at an outdoor show at the Plano American Legion Hall on July 29, and Family Days at the Hoover Forest Preserve in Yorkville on August 18.

Moser, a lance corporal in the Marine Corps, was the victim of an improvised explosive device last November in Afghanistan. He spent months recuperating at Walter Reed Medical Center in Maryland.

Awalt is a veteran himself, having served four years in the Air Force, and part of that time on loan to the Army. In his current role with District 308, he said, he works with special needs students, many of whom are in wheelchairs. That experience has made him want to help Moser all the more, he said.

If you’re interested in donating to the cause, a fund has been set up at under the name Kyle’s Chair/Gary Awalt. If you’d like to donate items to be raffled off at one of the above events, email Awalt at garyawalt@comcast.net.  

Kbell June 22, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Wouldn't it be nice if the government/military would pay for that. He got injured protecting us and now he has to fend for himself. It just doesn't seem right.
Richard R June 22, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Gary You could try this site. indiegogo.com I know of many people who have do a campaign on there and met their fund raising goal. Good Luck and I hope you can make the money you need to make for this.
Laura Harrison June 22, 2012 at 04:00 PM
My husband and I enjoyed a coversation with Gary at the Oswego fest. Hearing his stories and about the fundraiser. Im sure Oswego residents will not let down Kyle Moser in his time of need. We've all seen Oswego come together for past tragedies. Im proud to live in Oswego.
Rennetta June 24, 2012 at 05:13 PM
Andre, Thanks for this article. Obviously if we will all give just a little we can make this happen! Kendall County has just over 60,000 registered voters. Imagine what we could do for this young Marine if every one of us on the voter registration rolls gave even $5.00 (gosh..even $1.00)! C'mon ALL Kendall County voters -- let's start a Kyle's Chair Challenge!!! Let's challenge each other to give up 1 fast food meal and send the money as a donation for Kyle and his chair!!!
Accessible Living June 26, 2012 at 01:55 PM
Kyle's dad (Bob Moser) and I are so grateful to Gary for his efforts on behalf of Kyle. We are also thankful to our neighbors in Yorkville for their support, and to the Oswego community. Thank you for all you are doing to cheer on our brave Marine! Barbara Moser (Kyle's stepmom)

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