Editor’s Note: “Fatherhood On the Go” is the multi-part story of Remy Stevensen and his family. Please read Part 1 and Part 2. Also, consider donating to this cause (links removed, campaign over) to make Remy’s ride a success!
We needed the extra day off in Yuma. We were able to lose 20 lbs of gear and collect our thoughts. Beautiful pictures were taken with my wife’s grandmother and my beard was trimmed down to a very dapper French-looking goatee.
Arizona is one of the few states where bicyclist can ride on the Interstate, a fact we did not know until we were in Yuma. We have been able to capitalize on this in order to make this last leg of the trip less stressful on the children. Our ride out of Yuma flew by, and next thing we knew, we were underneath the overpass of our intended stop. Our “maybe” from the host turned into silence so we pushed out another six or seven miles to the first motel we found. It was rather dive-y but we got a cash discount. We dined on overpriced gas station oatmeal, cereal bars, Fritos, Powerade, sunflower seeds and bean dip and watched as much of the three-station cable TV we could. Needless to say we bounced as the sun was rising over the mountains and pedaled towards Gila Bend.
Patrick John Hughes introduced his boy to the piano at the age of nine months. His son, Patrick Henry Hughes, was born with a rare genetic disorder that left him without eyes and unable to fully straighten his arms and legs, preventing the ability to walk. But he was blessed with exceptional musical talent.
Now, at age 24, he is a nationally known pianist, singer, and trumpeter and subject of I Am Potential. He served as a member of his college marching band, playing the trumpet while his devoted father pushed him around in his wheelchair. The Hughes family was even featured on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition back in 2008. With determined optimism and courage, Hughes has made the phrase “I am potential” his mantra and defied the impossible at every turn.