‘Turner Walks’ event planned on Glenwood Springs pedestrian bridge Thursday evening | PostIndependent.com

‘Turner Walks’ event planned on Glenwood Springs pedestrian bridge Thursday evening

Courtesy: 12-year-old Turner Fautsko learns how to use his new Trexo robotic walking device, which he'll demonstrate during a special "Turner Walks" event Thursday on the Grand Avenue pedestrian bridge.

Look for some big smiles during a special stroll across the Grand Avenue pedestrian bridge on Thursday evening.

Glenwood Springs Middle School student Turner Fautsko, who has a rare neurological disorder that prevents him from walking on his own, received his new Trexo robotic walking device in May.

“We all had to do training to learn how to use it and make all the adjustments for Turner,” said his mom, Jenni Fautsko, who has arranged a “Turner Walks” parade at 5:30 p.m. Thursday across the downtown pedestrian bridge. 

“He has been getting better and better with it,” she said.

As of late last week, his longest walk was almost 30 minutes, including up to 560 steps per session and 35 steps a minute, Fautsko said.

“This is very good for under a month of walking,” she said.

Around Christmas last year, Jenni and husband Matt Fautsko completed a successful donor push to raise the $35,250 needed to purchase the Trexo.

“We expect to have many of his amazing donors there on Thursday, plus lots of family and friends including his best friend Hazen Lindenburg,” Fautsko said.

Representatives from Trexo have been invited to attend via Zoom.

“We couldn’t have done it without our wonderful family, friends and community,” she added.

Turner, who’s 12, has what’s known as KAND, which is a KIF1A-associated neurological disorder that has confined him to a wheelchair and causes spastic paraplegia and developmental delays. 

He is also nonverbal as a result of the condition, but is known for his infectious smiles, which are likely to be on full display during the Thursday stroll.

Turner had major spinal fusion surgery in October 2020, prior to which the Fautsko family had started a fundraising campaign to purchase a Galileo tilt table for Turner to use when out of his wheelchair.

However, the table manufacturer decided it would not be safe for him to use after the surgery.

So that money was then put toward the purchase of the Trexo, which is expected to give Turner the mobility he needs as he grows and help him avoid future medical complications.

The device is equipped with a computer tablet. With assistance from his physical therapist, Turner is in the process of learning how to use the Trexo on his own.

Senior Reporter/Managing Editor John Stroud can be reached at 970-384-9160 or jstroud@postindependent.com.

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