California man wheerchairs across US to Long Island

April 3, 2013 5:15:29 AM PDT
A California man is on his way to Long Island for his 25th high school reunion, but he's not getting to the east coast by bus, train or plane. Instead, he's taking his own set of wheels.

Santa Monica resident Gabriel Cordell is rolling across the country in his wheelchair, headed to West Hempstead.

The 42-year-old paraplegic, who was left disabled after a car accident 20 years ago, departed from the Burbank YMCA Tuesday morning.

He says his journey is a dream come true.

"I want to inspire and affect people," he said. "I want to be able to show everyone that no matter what their circumstances are, if they put their mind to something, they can accomplish it, no matter what anyone says to them."

Cordell says he plans to travel about 50 miles a day on his wheelchair. His entire trip is 3,300 miles.

He will be accompanied by a camera crew that's making a documentary film about his journey.