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Paralyzed Brothers Are Gifted Wheelchair-Friendly Van, Their Tear-jerking Story

Brothers Matthew and Adam Chaffee were given the gift of a lifetime. Several groups of strangers raised $80,000 for a wheelchair-accessible van. After the struggles these two brothers have endured, it comes as a godsend. Injured in two separate accidents just months apart, their story is inspiring. They went from one brother taking care of the other to two brothers taking care of each other. A familial bond doesn’t get stronger than this.

Their Struggle

Matt Chaffee, 25, was in a motorcycle accident in November of 2014. The accident left him paralyzed and in the care of his brother. With a severed spinal cord, his mobility is extremely limited.

Scoop Nest

After caring for his brother for eight months, Adam Chaffee (23) was paralyzed in a swimming accident. Adam is currently in a stem cell research program that shows some promise. The Michigan siblings now lean on each other for support.

The Vehicle That Changed Everything

After the local news caught wind of the brothers’ story, the spirit of giving spread across Michigan. A website,, was set up to raise funds. The end result was a wheelchair-friendly van that was gifted to the two men in 2016.


Adam is quoted as saying that the fundraisers “killed it.” The van boasts several features, including a raised ceiling to help accommodate their wheelchair height. The Toyota Sienna, a.k.a Swagger Waggon, gives the brothers a new sense of independence.

Their Adventurous Plans

What do the Caffee siblings plan on doing with their new freedom? Well, their first trip will be to Vanderbilt, Michigan. While not the most glamorous location, that is where their mother lives. The two haven’t been able to see her since Adam’s accident.


Adam and Matt have been up to a lot since the van was gifted to them in 2016. Adam recently graduated from Western Michigan University and continues to participate in the stem cell program. Matt has also completed new endeavors, such as competing in a whee
softball league.

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