Local girl blessed with beach wheelchair by ‘Angels of Alabama’


Thanks to some Alabama angels, an eight-year-old Fairhope girl born with Spina Bifida is now able to visit local beaches with her family.

Fairhope’s Katelynn Horne has had Spina Bifida since birth, and the spinal defect has made it difficult for her to enjoy going to the beach without being carried by her father, Brett.

Katelynn’s mother Heather wrote on her Facebook page that she was contacted a few months ago by a group out of Opelika called The Angels of Alabama who wanted to provide Katelynn a gift of a beach wheelchair.

“48 hours prior to this call, Emmalynn and I had a beach overnight trip,” Heather wrote. “I came home and cried in my closet and then told my mom and my husband that I was going to start looking into getting a grant for a beach wheelchair, so Katelynn could participate in beach trips like her twin sister. I grew up on the beach, and these days we avoid it all together. Well, no more! God answered our prayers when I received an email from a gentleman, Tyler, whom I thought was wanting to hire my services for photography of gifting another person with a chair.”

That Tyler was Tyler Thompson, executive director of The Angels of Alabama, who was also born with Spina Bifida. Thompson and his organization have given away beach wheelchairs to families across the country.

Heather said it was a true blessing to be able to see Katelynn get to enjoy the beach.

“Today was the first day I saw my daughter do the unthinkable since I was told she had Spina Bifida,” Heather wrote. “She was independent on the beach! It takes a village and we are blessed to have such a supportive one! Our father in law and family friend, Clint Martin, were able to see the joy Katelynn had when Tyler presented this bright purple chair to her! Thank you to all whom made this happen! God continues to place people in your life daily that impact you forever. I am reminded constantly how God not only choose us for Katelynn but choose the people to support us! God is Good!”