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Cross-country cyclist wraps up fundraising trek

Proceeds will benefit armless Spokane toddler

Jameson Davis isn’t much different from other 15-month-old boys. He’s an energetic baby with a mop of blond ringlets curling down his face.

But there is one thing that makes this Spokane boy different: He was born with no arms, the result of a congenital defect.

Jameson’s parents, Jim and Brooke Davis, can’t afford the $160,000 it will cost to fit Jameson with prosthetics. Insurance only covers half, and he’ll need them replaced as he grows. But when one man saw Jameson’s story, he knew he had to help.

Hector Picard, the world’s first double-arm-amputee Ironman triathlete, set off on a 36-day journey last month, biking 3,200 miles from Miami to Spokane to raise money for the Davis family to buy a set of prosthetics.

Picard biked from Pullman to Spokane on Saturday, arriving at 1 p.m. to cheers from the Davis family and their friends. About 50 people gathered afterward at Prospectors Bar and Grill in the Wandermere area in north Spokane for a silent auction and raffle.

He’d never met them before Saturday, but their shared stories connected Picard to Jameson in a way he couldn’t shake.

“You can’t beat the story,” he said. “It just fell into my hands. No pun intended.”

Picard lost his arms when an electrical accident at work sent 13,000 volts through his body, he said. He spent a week in a coma and woke up with his entire right arm and half of his left arm missing. Through it all, he never thought of what he couldn’t do.

“I thought about how do I do certain things?” Picard said. “How do I solve these issues that I now have to deal with for the rest of my life?”

Picard has completed three Ironman triathlons and is now a motivational speaker.

The journey across the country wasn’t easy, Picard said. Weather, road conditions and wildlife all posed threats, but he refused to give up.

Jameson’s dad, Jim Davis, said they’ve raised about $15,000 of Picard’s $32,000 goal. Picard will stay in Spokane for two more days to continue fundraising.

Brooke Davis, Jameson’s mom, said Picard contacted the family in November to organize the trip. She’s thrilled Jameson will have such a strong role model for the rest of his life.

“He’s going to know the impossible is possible,” she said.

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