by Veronica Volk, Interlochen Public Radio

By vastateparksstaff [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Julie Cataldo is strapped into a harness as she sits in her wheelchair just a few feet from the edge of the Erie Canal. A hydraulic lift hoists her from the chair and swings her out over the water.

The lift lowers her into a kayak, and its operator adjusts her seat. This is Cataldo’s second time in a single kayak, and in a few minutes, she’s cruising alone down the Canal near Rochester, N.Y.

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