Man wheelchairs across Long Island to help animals

Gabriel Cordell is trying to make a difference. He crossed the finish line to complete a 122-mile roll across Long Island in a manual wheelchair. The trip took him four days, culminating in a finish at the North Shore Animal League in Port Washington.

Cordell was involved in a terrible car accident more than 20 years ago that left him paralyzed but hasn't slowed him down. He has traveled cross-country in his wheelchair and throughout parts of Israel with an inspiring message: to never give up. [SEE PHOTOS]

His latest challenge raised over $5,000 to help build Bianca's Furry Friends Feline Adoption Center at North Shore Animal League America. The Long Island native says the organization means so much to animal lovers.

"He's inspiring and raising money for shelter pets," says Jill Berkart, VP at NSAL. "He's raising money for our capital campaign, Bianca's Furry Friends. He's doing it for the right reasons and we're so happy to support him."

Franklin is a Chihuahua mix who also uses a wheelchair to get around. He helped Cordell cross the finish line. His owner Kathy is amazed by cordell's determination.

"You have to take that leap of faith," Cordell says. "And believe it or not, most of the time you're going to land on your feet or on your butt sitting in a wheelchair."

Construction on the second floor cat facility will hopefully start in a couple of years. Once open, it will free up space for more puppy and dog rescues.
 

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