Longboarder’s dad finishes cross-Canada trek

Brandon Harrison, 18, is still recovering in hospital from a stroke he suffered during his Long for Life longboarding trek across Canada, but that hasn’t stopped his father.

Brandon Harrison, 18, is still recovering in hospital from a stroke he suffered during his Long for Life longboarding trek across Canada, but that hasn’t stopped his father.

Harrison’s father Michael Floyd made it to Victoria on Oct. 13, completing his son’s trip.

But he didn’t put his board in the water, a symbolic gesture meant to show he is waiting for his son to finish the trip. Harrison’s trip was conceived to raise awareness and funds for research for cancer and heart and stroke.

Harrison’s grandmother Roxanne Traubert, of Red Deer, said her grandson’s attitude is great, even though it is a long way until his full recovery.

“He’s confident, he knows he is going to be able to finish it,” said Traubert, adding this stroke is much worse than his first.

“The first one affected his vision a little bit, it didn’t affect his mobility. This one paralyzed his left side, his face is OK, he has movement from the hip to his knee and not anything in his arm yet.”

She said right now Harrison is learning to balance and walk in a limited capacity.

Harrison has battled strokes and cancer throughout his life.

He was diagnosed with cancer when he was two-and-a-half years old, given a 25 per cent chance to live with a fist-sized tumour on his spine. After extensive treatment he was declared cancer-free.

Then at 15 he had his first stroke as a result of AV malformations, purposeless blood vessels, in his brain burst. Two years ago he had a mild stroke after a blood vessel burst. He recovered and embarked on a summer-long longboard ride with his father Floyd.

That trip ended for Harrison on Sept. 7 in Red Deer when he suffered his most recent stroke.

Traubert said they are hoping to have Long for Life events next summer, and hopefully Harrison is able to complete the trek.