With Patrick Gray, Justin Skeesuck, Ted Hardy, Michael Turner
USA, Spain | 2017 | 100'
I’ll Push You is an intimate portrait and epic journey, exploring the true meaning of friendship and the power of community.
All is put to the test when Patrick agrees to a crazy proposition – to push his lifelong best friend, Justin, across the historical 500-mile pilgrimage of northern Spain, the Camino de Santiago in a wheelchair. The result? A one-of-a-kind documentary film and memoir chronicling their pilgrimage.
I’ll Push You is not just the remarkable story of one able bodied man pushing another man’s wheelchair on a 500-mile journey. It’s the story of two friends who’ve spent their entire life’s journey pushing each other to be better people. Through their courage, grace and dignity, Justin and Patrick remind us that we are stronger together than separate. As it turn out, we all need a push.
About The Camino
The history of the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela dates back to the ninth century to the discovery of the body of the apostle St. James. Scholars believe St. James was a great evangelist in Spain at the time during the reign of King Alfonso II (792-842). Gradually, people started making their way to Santiago to pay homage to St. James at the Cathedral which was built over the site of the tomb. Between the 12th and 13th centuries, the pilgrimage became more established and more popular. In the last 30 years, in particular, there has been a huge growth and interest in the number of pilgrims traveling on foot, by bike, on horseback, or in our case, by wheelchair! Although originally known as a Christian pilgrimage, the Camino now attracts people of all faiths and backgrounds, from atheists to Buddhists, adventurers to mourners, and college students to retired friends. Regardless of background, all who take this pilgrimage are transformed in some way when they unplug from the world and live in community together.
The main characters
Terry Parish began his career in 1996 as a graphic designer before turning to video content and broadcast commercial direction and production when he cofounded emota, inc – a San Diego-based video agency – in 2009. He’s written, directed and produced semi-documentary & marketing content for brands all over the world, like: Blue Buffalo, Charlotte Russe, Citrix, Dockers, eBay, Levi’s, Petco, Qualcomm, Sony and Tempur-Pedic. I’ll Push You is his directorial, film debut. The experience of the Camino provided him the opportunity to share his heart about his hope for friendship, the challenges of generosity and vulnerability, and our ultimate need for the healing power of community. Terry Parish was joined by his business partner, Chris Karcher, as the co-director of I’ll Push You.
Justin Skeesuck enjoyed a prolific career as a graphic designer until a progressive neuromuscular disease finally robbed him of the use of his arms and legs. Never one to dwell on the struggles of life, he has pursued adventure despite living life from a wheelchair. His world travels with his wife and children have done nothing but fuel his desire to experience other cultures. When Justin discovered the Camino de Santiago while watching Rick Steves, he knew he had to attempt the 500-mile journey across Spain, but knew he couldn’t do it alone. When Justin asked his best friend, Patrick Gray, his thoughts about the journey, the story of I’ll Push You came to life. Leaving graphic design behind, Justin now speaks and writes words of hope, along side Patrick. Together, they share their stories of their struggles in life, challenging people around the world to look at their limitations differently; as something to overcome. Justin lives in Eagle, Idaho with his wife Kirstin and their three children Jaden, Noah, and Lauren.
As a former high school teacher, a former registered nurse, and a former health care administrator, Patrick Gray is a lover of people. He believes that who we are on a day to day basis is the greatest testament to what we believe. His life as a husband and father of three children provides him with daily joy, and his recent adventure across Spain with best friend Justin Skeesuck, has opened his eyes to a whole new world of people hungry for hope and purpose. This story known as I’ll Push You has opened many doors for both Patrick and Justin to share their unapologetic thoughts on faith, friendship, and love. Leaving his career in healthcare behind, Patrick’s new found passion is writing and public speaking with Justin, where they challenge others to live their lives more fully regardless of the limitations they might face. Patrick lives in Meridian, Idaho with his wife Donna and their three children Cambria, Joshua, and Olivia.