After missing some key developmental milestones, our son Parker was diagnosed with autism at just one-and-a-half years old. Like many other families, we had very little understanding of autism before Parker's diagnosis. After our pediatric neurologist prescribed intensive and immediate ABA (applied behavior analysis) therapy, we became very overwhelmed and lost in the Early Intervention system. Ensuring that Parker would have access to the therapy he needed instantly became our life. After countless hours on the phone and months of waiting lists, we were fortunate to find ABA therapy for Parker through Crossroads Center for Children. In going through our day-to-day experiences and lessons learned on our journey, we have felt that there is a need to help other families and children affected by autism in any possible way that we can. With our family's involvement in racing, a national platform with NASCAR, and a local dirt-racing following, we are confident in our ability to get the word out. We want to do everything we can to boost autism awareness and help support the efforts of not only the Crossroads Center but also schools like them that facilitate early awareness and intervention therapies, which have been so beneficial to our son and our family.
Last year, we teamed up with our racing partner Halmar International and car builder DKM Fabrication to raise over $6,100 for Crossroads by auctioning off a body we ran on our dirt modified at a tribute race at Albany Saratoga Speedway. This year, we want to do more by using the exposure we have with our NASCAR Gander Outdoor Series #52 truck. Together, lets help make a difference at Crossroads Center and other facilities that need funding to help children and families just like ours to be triumphant.