Backpacking Documentary - Special Screenig Of Beyond The Chair

A few years ago I quit my engineering job to set out on a journey of a lifetime. I wanted to broaden my knowledge of the world and find myself a bigger "fish tank." I was going to backpack around the world. Not just your typical Europe jaunt, but more adventurous destinations such as New Zealand, Cambodia, Thailand and India. What makes this story interesting is that I was going to do it all despite having Muscular Dystrophy and relying on a 260 lb power wheelchair.

My roommate at the time was a filmmaker and knew this would make an amazing story. I got really excited when I thought about the challenges I was about to undertake and the possibility of sharing it with the world. So I agreed because I wanted to show people what was possible.

The weekend after Thanksgiving 2007 I let go of the life I knew and set out to take on the world. I was scared. I had never been away from home for so long. What if I got sick? What if my chair broke down or I got stranded somewhere? All those questions were about to be answered...

Beyond the Chair is the story of an ordinary man, Andrew Shelley, living the American Dream. He leads a successful life as an engineer and a single bachelor. Just beneath the surface, he is unhappy with the expectations and perceptions that society puts on him. He sees his life as the result of choices laid out by everyone but himself. It's time to become the man he wants to be, so he sets out on a backpacking journey across the world to find out exactly who he is. But there is one catch; Andrew is all but confined to a wheelchair because of an affliction with Muscular Dystrophy, a disease that has deteriorated his body down to 90 lbs. How will he survive this journey? Maybe more importantly, will he find what he is searching for before it is too late?

A special screening of the feature documentary Beyond The Chair will be held at the Rave 18 Los Angeles on Thursday, August 02, 7:30pm. Tickets are $10 and can be reserved through July 27th at

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Comment by Scupine on July 26, 2012 at 5:58pm

Thanks for posting this, Drew!

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