A York Region police officer takes on a grueling 24-hour fitness challenge in honor of his son on Saturday.
For the second year in a row, Constable Adam McEachern is participating in a fitness challenge to raise awareness and support autism.
The challenge includes a one-mile run, 66 push-ups, 66 overhead squats and a one-minute plank, repeated 66 times over the next 24 hours.
“So it ends up being 66 miles, 4,356 push-ups, 4,356 overhead squats, and 66 one-minute planks,” McEachern explains.
McEachern chose these numbers based on statistics indicating that one in 66 children in Canada will be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
McEachern’s son, Caleb, was diagnosed on the spectrum at age three and a half.
Now eight years old, Caleb is McEachern’s biggest inspiration.
“He’s a very special, talented and brilliant young man,” he said. “He pushes me. He pushes me. He’s my superman.”
Funds raised at this event will go to Kerry’s Place Autism Services, which provides support and services for autistic children, young adults and adults.
The service provides 24/7 supportive care in homes across Ontario.
McEachern hopes to raise $100,000 for Kerry’s Place.
“The challenge is to change the world we live in, even if it’s just a small part of it, so that people like my son can have a more equal chance,” Constable said. “So if I can do it, then I will do it every year.”
Sue Coke, CEO of Kerry’s Place, said events like this help provide other supports, such as respites and camps and support for young adults looking for work.
“We help our young adults learn interview skills and coach them to find jobs,” says Coke.
McEachern will participate in the challenge until noon Sunday.
More information on donations can be found here.