The Glad Brothers
Murray and Camren Glad are brothers, ages 11 and 15 respectively, and they were both born with spina bifida. Anyone who spends time with the two boys knows this is the least interesting characteristic of either of them! Instead, their joie de vivre, their menagerie of 21 pets and their wide ranging interests and talents take center stage. They have two older brothers and they live with their parents Tonja and Dave. As the family says often, “we have two walkers and two rollers.”
The NAC has provided opportunities for these boys to participate in sports they love at very young ages. And more than just learning physical skills, Camren and Murray found role models all around them at the NAC and learned how much they COULD do.
From the moment Camren’s sonogram revealed spina bifida, the family’s life was turned upside down. During the pregnancy and after Camren was born, it took a lot of learning and countless surgeries for the family to make adjustments for Camren. Camren sometimes felt like the “odd man out”, but that all changed when his Aunt told Camren about the National Ability Center. When he was four, he started skiing with the NAC and his Aunt and her friends always came along to support him. There, Camren was able to see people of all different abilities, not just skiing, but doing all kinds of activities he hadn’t thought were possible.
The relationship with the NAC has always been a family affair. This continued when Murray entered the picture. Although he arrived in a family already equipped to welcome another child with spina bifida, his journey hasn’t been easy. Murray has had over a dozen surgeries including massive brain surgery. When Murray was four, he also started skiing with the NAC. Both boys continue to ski with the NAC, and Camren also gets to participate in other activities including Action Camps. The camps allow him increased independence while hanging out with teens from all over the country who all spend the week at the NAC doing everything from sled hockey to rock climbing. When not at the NAC, the Glad boys are busy singing, camping, hiking, snorkeling and wrestling each other and their older brothers.