Posts Tagged ‘bilateral amputee’

A little over a month ago I blogged about a truly inspirational group of bike riders that were planing on a trip from the Isle of Man all the way down though the UK and over into Africa and finishing up in Durban South Africa. You can read that blog here. But as with all best laid plans not every thing can go to plan all the time. So this is just a bit of an update to what Bushy McKelvey and Hylton Smith have been up to the past few weeks. And boy have they been busy.

Africa Map

So plan “B” is now to visit 16 countries in Africa and cover some 18,000 kms. Still an epic journey for someone who is somewhat legless. During the trip Bushy and Hylton plan to understand cultures, lifestyles and problems that disabled  people encounter on a daily basis in each of the countries visited. They will also be focusing on environmental Non-Profit organisations along the way. To be honest I think the plan “B” option of just doing an Africa trip will actually be harder than one stating in the Isle of Man and heading though Africa. Going though Africa means that you can pick and choice the countries you go though a little easier so as to avoid some of the political conflicts that are being faced in Africa. Where as this way not so easy as you have to make a massive detour round a country that you may wish to miss.

Now if that was not all, planing for an epic trip round Africa, Bushy has also set a world record ! 1500km in 24 hours on a Vespa Scooter, around the winding and sharp turning Red Star Raceway in Gauteng, to raise funds for the Out On A Limb expedition! The previous world record was set at 1178km

You can read more about the 24hr Scooter World Record Challenge here.

Well its not long now till Bushy, Hylton and their support team and camera crew depart from Pietermaritzburg, Kwa-Zulu Natal, on their epic 16 countries 18,000 kms journey.  They will be departing on Saturday 2nd June 2012 and will head down to the coast. You can follow their progress via The Out on A Limb Facebook page here and on the official Out on A Limb page where you can also find loads of info on the team and sponsors. You can also find ways of how to support the guys here too.

So I wish the Bushy, Hylton and all the team all the very best on their epic adventure and it just goes to show even when your legless  you can still stand tall and and follow your dreams to make a difference.


All to often you hear of stories of people being involved in accidents or have debilitating illnesses that changes a persons life completely. Quite a few of these people often wish they were dead and play the victim card. We never really hear about them people as they seem to just fade away. They have no reason to just fade away nor do they have no reason not to make the most of their life. Granted its hard to get back up on the horse once it has bucked you off and try to have a positive out look on life after it has dealt you a massive blow.  But with the right mental attitude and the willing and support of others, the sky is the limit.

Or in the case of the next two really inspirational men, The Isle of Man to Durban South Africa is the limit. Bushy McKelvey and Hylton Smith are in the process of planing an epic aventure that will take them on a 28 000 km journey from the Isle of Man through 30 counties down through Africa to Durban, South Africa. This trip will take these two adventures and their support team around 100 days to complete. So what makes there two any more special than the likes of Ewan McGregor or Charley Boorman, of Long Way Down fame?

Out On A Limb

Bushy McKelvey who is the initiator of the “Out On A Limb” project is a bilateral below the knee amputee and has two prosthetic legs. He lost his legs in two separate accidents. His right leg after being struck by a taxi minibus while riding his bike in 1999. And if that was not bad enough! Then, nine years later, riding with one prosthetic leg, he was again hit by a car in Pietermaritzburg while on his way to a biker’s function. Many people by now would have hung the bike leathers up and stayed off the bike, but not Bushy! No Bushy has got back on the bike and it planning on one hell of a bike ride.

Bushy is not completely mad! He has enlisted the help of fellow rider and personal friend of mine, Hylton Smith and a support and production team to document the trip.

Hylton Smith, two times former South African off-road champion as well as multiple KwaZulu Natal off-road champion, will be co-rider and co-presenter with Bushy in the “Out On A Limb project”. He began his racing career at an early age and progressed over the years to be a consistent contender in multiple facets of off-road racing. In 2006 Hylton had a major collision with a tree at the Swaziland off road race and sustained extensive internal injuries to his liver as well as losing a kidney. In 2007, after a year of intensive rehabilitation and training he courageously took part in the UAE Desert Challenge in Dubai, during an unfortunate accident in this race Hylton suffered extensive nerve damage to his shoulder. This damage is irreparable but has not stopped Hyllton from continuing to ride.

So as you can see from the short bio’s of both Hylton and Bushy they have both had quite life changing events in their lives. But not wanting to be victims in these events they have got back on their bikes and continued to ride. Now they want to use something that has been a major part of their life to make a difference in others lives that are less fortunate than themselves.

The aim of “Out On A Limb” is to raise funds for disabled people by producing a series for broadcast that documents his (Bushy ) travels and experiences by motorcycle through 30 countries/destinations visiting and assisting numerous Non-Profit Organisations and covering approximately 28 000 km’s within 100 days.

Bushy’s 100-day expedition will kick off on the Isle of Man in the UK and end in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. This awareness campaign was a “dream” for which he had worked tirelessly for two years. Two co-riders and a In the Dark Productions film crew will accompany him.

Please be sure to visit the Out on a Limb website for more info – Out On A Limb

What these lads are doing is truly inspirational.  They could have so easy have parked their bikes up and called it a day after the tragic events that have changed their life’s but nope they are turning a negative into a positive and using it to help others. Some may even go as far as heroic.

I wish Bushy, Hylton and the team all the very best on their epic journey and I hope I may get to meet them during there trip though the UK sometime in May