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On Saturday, August, 25th at Chatfield Reservoir, Bayaud Enterprises’ Laundry Truck team joined the Denver Tech Center Rotary Club (who helped fund the second laundry truck) for a relay race of epic proportions!  The Paddle Festival Fundraiser helps raise funds for the international projects that the Denver Tech Center Rotary Club supports.

The Laundry Truck Team was made up of Craig Salas, Leonard Estes, and Ray and Amanda Lyall with the support of supervisor Rosalita Perez and Bayaud’s Executive Director David Henninger.  Craig, Leonard, Ray and Amanda joined thinking’s they were just doing some paddle boarding.  Well, perhaps “just” was misleading. None of this team of four had ever done paddle boarding before.  Upon arrival, they found that there were many teams (some representing the Army), most with a vast bit more experience than them.  Not only did they have very serious competition, they were doing a whole lot more than just paddle boarding.  They had been entered into a relay consisting of multiple different water sports as well as several land relays including semi-complicated obstacles/tasks to complete.

They were not discouraged.  Together, they walked through the course, stopping to read every sign and figure out what was going to be expected of them.  They watched and strategized together as other teams tackled the relays.  Did we mention that Leonard is legally blind and had not even been in the water since losing his sight?! However, this team individual was no stranger to hurdles each having some level of serious challenges in their own lives.  Before long, they were up.  With nervous laughter and cheers from their supporters (Rosalita and David), they were off to the first challenge.

Despite being underprepared, they worked well together as a team and left no man behind.  They finished every obstacle and stayed in close competition with the others around them, crossing the finish line panting and being cheered on.  Special awards were created just for The Laundry Truck Team.  Leonard received the first ever bravery award and the team together was acknowledged for their level of teamwork.  There had been some shock at the level of willingness from the Laundry Truck staff to even attend the event, but they showed up with game faces on and had a great time representing for a non-profit that is very dear to each of their hearts.

“I have overcome obstacles all the time in daily life.  Saturday, I got a chance to overcome obstacles and limitations I didn’t even yet know I had.  It was my first time in the water since I went blind.  I had a great time and a great learning experience it was one of the best days with Bayaud to date.” – Leonard

“The Rotary club was awesome, our team did an outstanding job on the course.  Thank you David Henninger for asking us to do this.” – Ray