August 26, 1957
Rick Hansen is born in Port Alberni, BC, and grows up in Fort St. John, Abbotsford, and Williams Lake, BC.
June 27, 1973
On the way home from a fishing trip, Rick and his friend Don Alder are in a car accident and are thrown from the back of a pickup truck. Rick injures his spinal cord and is paralyzed from the waist down.
Rick’s dad and his brother Brad take Rick fishing for the first time after his accident.
Returning home from rehabilitation, Rick is encouraged by his volleyball coach Bob Redford to get involved in wheelchair sports.
Rick was recruited to play wheelchair basketball by Stan Strong for the Vancouver Cable Cars
Rick enrolls at the University of British Columbia. He later becomes the first person with a physical disability to graduate with a degree in Physical Education.
Rick recruited Terry Fox to join the Vancouver Cable Cars to play on their wheelchair basketball team. They became good friends
In five years, Rick wins 19 wheelchair marathons, three world titles, and 15 medals, 6 at the Paralympic Games and 9 at the Pan Am Games. He’s also Canada’s Disabled Athlete of the Year in 1979, 1980, 1982.
March 21, 1985
Rick and his team leave Vancouver to embark on the Man In Motion World Tour, a journey around the globe to prove the potential of people with disabilities and raise awareness for accessibility.
Rick and the team reach Australia and cross the halfway point of the tour.
May 22, 1987
Rick and his team complete the World Tour and return to Vancouver. The Tour raised $26 million for SCI research, rehabilitation and sport.
June 29, 1987
Rick is inducted into the Companion of the Order of Canada
October 10, 1987
Rick and Amanda, Rick’s physiotherapist on the Man In Motion World Tour, get married in Vancouver.
Rick and Amanda move to Brisbane, Australia where Rick is appointed the Commissioner-General of the Canadian Pavilion for the duration of Expo 88.
The Man In Motion World Tour Society (later the Rick Hansen Foundation) is created to raise money to improve the lives of people with disabilities and to support SCI research.
Rick and the Foundation co-founded National Access Awareness Week in partnership with the Federal Government
March 23, 1990
Birth of Emma Hansen
January 17, 1992
Birth of Alanna Hansen
Rick is inducted into the Order of BC
July 6, 1995
Birth of Rebecca Hansen
Rick and the Rick Hansen Foundation work with the University of British Columbia to support the creation of CORD (later the creation of ICORD, the International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries); a group of researchers and clinicians work together to make basic research more relevant to people with spinal cord injuries; and helped to establish five leadership endowments worth $20 million (now part of the Rick Hansen Trust at UBC)
Rick is the Founding Chair of the Fraser River Sturgeon Conservation Society
Rick establishes the Pacific Salmon Endowment Fund Society
Rick receives the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Commemorative Medal from the Governor General of Canada
Rick is inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.
Rick is inducted into the BC Sports Hall of Fame.
Rick and the Rick Hansen Foundation lead the creation of the Rick Hansen Institute (now the Praxis Spinal Cord Institute) and helped create the Blusson Spinal Cord Centre, a global collaboration of people with SCI, researchers, and service providers dedicated to generating life-enhancing solutions for those with SCI. Their work is also in support of UBC’s International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries (ICORD), a key research consortium within the Blusson Centre.
As one of four final torchbearers, Rick carries the Olympic Flame into BC Place at the Opening Ceremony for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
August 24, 2011-May 22, 2012
During the 25th Anniversary of the Man In Motion World Tour, the Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Relay, retraces the Canadian segment of the MIMWT, recognizing 7,000 difference makers who inspire a new generation to help improve the lives of people with disabilities.
Rick is appointed Honorary Colonel of The Joint Personnel Support Unit (JPSU). The JPSU provides support services for currently serving and former CAF ill and injured personnel, their families, and the families of the fallen, through Integrated Personnel Support Centres (IPSCs). As an Honorary Colonel, Rick visited various IPSC units across the Country in order to help foster morale and build relationships.
Rick and the Foundation mark Canada’s 150th Anniversary with support by the Government of Canada by granting $1.5 million to schools and community groups to help Canadians activate 55 large-scale “Barrier Buster” infrastructure improvement projects and awareness building events in their communities.
The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ is launched, the only program that rates, certifies and showcases accessible buildings.
Rick is an Ambassador for the Invictus Games in Toronto, Canada.
Rick celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the Man In Motion World Tour by co-authoring a book, Rick Hansen’s Man In Motion World Tour – 30 Years later, A Celebration of Courage, Strength and The Power of Community.
After a carefully phased 3-year process, Rick officially elevates from CEO to Founder of the Rick Hansen Foundation. As Founder, Rick will focus his time where it has maximum impact including being an advocate for change, building external relationship and continuing to inspire and engage audiences through public appearances. Doramy Ehling is appointed as the new CEO after over a decade of dedication to the Foundation as COO.