Neighbors hope to buy new wheelchair for man committed to keeping park clean

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — No matter the weather, nearly every day you'll see Chris Collier cleaning up Gaisman Park in the Highland Heights community — and he does it all in his wheelchair.

Now some neighbors are giving back to man who is giving so much to his community.

"Having this space to even just visit is the most greatest anti-depressant God has ever made," Collier said at Gaisman Park. "I am just trying to make the best out of it for as many people as I can."

Collier has an extremely rare, hereditary form of muscular dystrophy called hereditary spastic paraplegic.

When Collier moved to the neighborhood in 2013, he started Friends of Gaisman Park. He leads the charge on litter pickup, planting flowers and painting bike racks and benches.

What he doesn't really talk about is how his wheelchair makes his cleanup efforts difficult. It's had countless repairs, and it's hard to maneuver around the park's terrain.

"Why don't we get our city, our community, our neighbors involved in giving back to this person who has given so much to this community?" asked Christina Crutchfield with the Highland Heights Development Cooperation.

She helped launch a fundraiser for Collier to get him a top-of-the-line motorized wheelchair.

"If he had the accessibility factor that he needs, he could do so much more than he`s already doing," she said.

Collier told us he's as humble as ever.

"I'm lucky so many people want to help," he said, then paused for a moment. "For that, I'm just grateful. I really am."

If you'd like to help out, click here.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.