Featured Customers

Our customers rock, and AMS Vans is always ready to go the extra mile to support them! We give back, not only by sponsoring various events, but by enthusiastically supporting individuals who engage in activity that betters the community of disabled people. From financing materials for new inventions and building custom wheelchair vans for veterans to promoting disability fundraisers, we’re here to help. The customers we feature have caught our eye for a special reason, and we’re passionate about taking their aspirations to the next level. Learn more about our customers who are accomplishing goals that are often nothing short of amazing.

5 Actors on Wheels Making Moves in Hollywood

The characters we see on film and TV are becoming more and more diverse. It’s not uncommon these days to see a character with a disability in a show or movie. In the past, though, most actors portraying those characters were played by actors without disabilities. But, thanks to the hard work and perseverance of many dedicated individuals, people with disabilities are taking their rightful place in Hollywood among the stars.

Here are some actors on wheels that have made a name for themselves in the entertainment biz.

1. Micah Fowler

actor micah fowler

Micah Fowler, Image: IMDB

What did you get for your eighteenth birthday? For Micah, he got a lead role in a TV series. The show Speechless is about JJ, a young adult living with cerebral palsy. It aims at giving viewers insights on the challenges faced by people, and specifically teens, with special needs. They tackle issues like dating, parenting, disability awareness, healthcare and more.

Born in 1998 in New Jersey, he started acting when he was five because of his older sister and best friend, Kelsey. He took the next step in his career after his sister booked a role on Broadway. This led him to roles in Blue’s CluesSesame Street, and the film Labor DayMicah is also an ambassador to the Cerebral Palsy Foundation and devotes his time to the foundation’s efforts when not performing.

2. Teal Sherer

actress teal sherer

Teal Sherer, Image: IMDB

Teal went from taking theatre classes in college and working on school productions, to starring in the Emmy nominated film Warm Springs alongside Kathy Bates, and working closely with Kenneth Branagh as he prepared for his role of Franklin D. Roosevelt. She has appeared on TV on Survivor’s Remorse, The Guild, and more recently on NCIS: New Orleans. Also a dancer, Teal has performed with the Full Radius Dance Company and appeared on the NBC pilot of I’m with Stupid.

Teal is well-known in the disability community for her web series My Gimpy Life, which won the 2013 Best Female Comedy Performance at the Web Television Awards. She has also been featured in national commercials for clients including Liberty Mutual insurance, Disneyland (Cars Land) and Chrysler.

Next up for Teal, she’ll be starring in the Pulitzer Prize winning play Cost of Living in Vancouver, Canada! And, we’re sure much more!

3. Daryl ‘Chill’ Mitchell

actor daryl Chill Mitchell holding an award

Daryl “Chill” Mitchell, Image: NewMobility.com

Daryl ‘Chill’ Mitchell is without a doubt one of the most recognizable faces when it comes to actors who roll, with film and TV credits dating back to the 80’s. His staying power is a testament to his work ethic and likable personality – and we can expect to see Chill on the big screen for years to come.

Starting as a member of a hip hop group in the 1980’s, he saw further success in acting with roles in films like House Party, The Inside Man, Galaxy Quest and 10 Things I Hate About You, to name a few. He also made appearances in TV shows like The Cosby Show, Becker, Brothers and Desperate Housewives. Since 2014 he has had a role on NCIS: New Orleans and joined the cast of Fear The Walking Dead in 2018.

Chill has paved the way for so many other actors on wheels -and we’re really proud to have as a customer here at AMS Vans in Atlanta!

4. Ali Stroker

actress and Tony award winner Ali Stroker

Ali Stroker, Image: AliStroker.com

You may have heard Ali Stroker‘s name recently, as she just became the first performer in a wheelchair to win a Tony Award for her role of Ado Annie in the revival of the classic Broadway show Oklahoma!!

She has performed at the Kennedy and Lincoln Centers, earned a Barrymore Award nomination for her role in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and was cast as Tamara in ABC’s show Ten Days in the Valley. A talented singer as well, Ali was a finalist on the second season of The Glee Project, and later appeared as a guest star on Glee in 2013. She played the role of Anna in Deaf West’s 2015 revival of Spring Awakening and appeared on the new Lethal Weapon TV series.

Being the first isn’t new to Ali Stroker. In fact, she became the first actress in a wheelchair to earn a degree in Fine Arts from New York University in 2009. Further, in 2015, she became the first performer in a wheelchair to appear on Broadway. If you have kids, you may have also seen her cameos on Sesame Street!

5. Santina Muha

actor and comedian Santina Muha

Santina Muha, Image: IMDB

Growing up in New Jersey as a member of an extended Italian family, humor has been a big part of Muha’s life. Paralyzed at the age of 6 after being involved in a car accident, she found that comedy would often ease the tension in a room. Santina grew up studying pop culture and learning from her favorite actors on TV – and from a young age, it was clear she was destined for stardom. Today she is a comic, actress, writer, storyteller and improviser currently plying her trade in Los Angeles.

Since joining UCB in 2013, Santina has contributed to their shows; hosting Rollin’ with my Homies, and writing and performing her one-woman show, That Girl in the Wheelchair. Not only is Santina raising awareness and dismantling stereotypes for people in wheelchairs through her comedy and writing, but she is also improving physical access to stages around UCB that have never been accessible before.

Santina is best known for her roles on Comedy Bang! Bang!One Day at a Time and starring opposite Joaquin Phoenix in Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot. Keep an eye out for this Jersey girl, because you’ll be seeing much more of her!

If you're an actor in a wheelchair, Hollywood is ready for you! With dedication and hard work, your dream can come to life! #actorswithdisabilities Click To Tweet

 

hand controls for accelerator & brake

Veigel Hand Controls Testimonial, Demo | AMS Vans

America’s Mobility Superstore is known nationwide as a leader in wheelchair van sales, but many don’t know that we also adapt other vehicles with handicap accessible equipment.

In this video testimonial, Drew, who has extensive nerve damage in his right leg, talks about and demonstrates his new Veigel Classic II Hand Controls installed by AMS Vans. The device smoothly transfers foot pedal operations to the driver’s right hand, and allows Drew to drive again!

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Funding a Wheelchair Van with a Unicycle and a Firetruck

You might see something unusual on the side of the road on Saturday if you live around Atlanta, GA.  Bill Mueller will be riding a unicycle 100 miles in efforts to raise money to buy a new wheelchair van for his brother, Gary Mueller, a retired firefighter for over 20 years who was paralyzed from the chest down in March 2009 when he fell off the two-story back deck of his home.  AMS Vans has contributed a $5,000 discount towards the price of the wheelchair van as our pledge to help Gary and his brother in their fundraising.

On Thursday, firefighters traveled from Cape Coral, Florida to Atlanta, GA in a classic 30 year old restored American LaFrance fire truck to raise awareness of the website supporting the cause: www.RideForGary.com

“There’s so much attention that I get when I’m riding it,” he said. “I thought this would be a great way to raise money.”

Bill was right.  The website has so far generated $3,000 by allowing people to sponsor the unicycle ride by the mile, and the Cape Coral firefighters raised $3,000 on their own towards the effort.  A car wash was thrown by supporters that raised $600, and a man donated a new scooter that will be sold online to raise more funds.  T-shirts will also be available at the event for $20 to bring in extra funding.

“This is a guy that has been a friend to us for over 20 years, and we’re just looking to help him out and take care of him,” said Lt. Ken Retzer of the Cape Coral Fire Department. “He’s a fellow brother of the fire department.”

The Cape Coral firefighter group will also be following behind Gary in their restored firetruck as he rides his unicycle on Saturday from fire station to fire station to generate more interest for the event along the route.  They are heading out at 7 am from a firestation in Gainesville, GA and will be making stops at fire stations through Hall, Gwinett, DeKalb, and Fulton counties.

“The intent is to buy the van, but the motivation is to help Gary regain his independence,” Retzer said. “This is just a shot in the arm to turn the page in his life. We have no plans on quitting before this goal is met.”

Since leaving the hospital, Gary Mueller’s wife, Mary Ann, has been taking care of him along with his brother. Gary is unable to remember what he was doing prior to his fall, but his family believes he may have been filling bird feeders.

“It was pretty serious,” Bill Mueller said of the accident.

He added that the fund-raiser has changed his brother’s disposition.

“It almost completely turned around his attitude,” Bill Mueller said. “His spirits are great.”

A pre-event party will be held at 8 p.m., Friday, at Engine 11, a restaurant and bar in Atlanta that once was a working firehouse. Following Bill Mueller’s ride Saturday, an after-event party will be held at Engine 11 beginning at 9 p.m.