Order of BC awarded to inventive Langley man

A Langley man dedicated to helping others with mobility issues received the Order of British Columbia.

Norman Rolston created the Able Walker around 1986 after seeing his aunt rely on a kitchen chair to move around in her home.

His prototype mobility walker included swivel casters for steering and hand brakes.

Initial skepticism from the medical profession changed after he met with the Surgeon General of the United States who liked the invention.

Following that meeting, the medical profession took a renewed interest in his device.

It’s not the first accolade he’s earned for the invention. Rolston chose not to patent the device. For that he won the first Humanitarian of the Year Award presented by the International Society of Inventors.

“The Order of British Columbia recognizes British Columbians whose positive impact is felt throughout the province and, in some cases, the world,” said Premier Christy Clark. “From inventing the AbleWalker so that seniors can remain active, or connecting people across cultures, this year’s recipients make a difference in their communities. On behalf of all British Columbians, I want to thank them for everything they do to make B.C. a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.”

Rolston is in good company, one of 16 award recipients.

Also receiving the Order of B.C. were Tamara Taggart and Melvin Zajac.

“For 26 years, the Order of British Columbia has recognized the remarkable accomplishments and efforts by extraordinary British Columbians,” said Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon. “This year we honour British Columbians from a variety of fields, each recipient illustrating the positive difference just one person can make in the lives of many.”

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