New book chronicles Florida wheelchair ramp ministry

All proceeds to benefit Ray of Hope nonprofit

Press Gazette contributor
[Special to the Press Gazette]

 MOODY, Ala. — Author Gary Lloyd has released his fifth book, Ray of Hope, chronicling Pace nonprofit.

Jimmy Ray’s passion was for the disabled, those in northwest Florida who were stuck inside their homes because they could not afford to have wheelchair ramps built. Ray began constructing wheelchair ramps with the help of his wife and young daughter.

Along the way, a church ministry grew. It became Ray’s mission in life. Men, women, and children volunteered. Donors gave money and materials. More than five hundred lives changed forever. In "Ray of Hope," Ray’s passion appears through family, friends and more than a dozen people who received wheelchair ramps when they had nowhere else to turn.

Ray was Lloyd’s father-in-law but Lloyd never had the chance to meet him. Ray died on Feb. 28, 2010, two years before Lloyd met his daughter, Jessica. "Ray of Hope’s" publication date is eight years to the day after Jimmy’s death.

"The idea for this book came in 2016 on a ride to the Atlanta airport," Lloyd said. "Ray’s wife, Ramona, was driving Jessica and me there for a trip we were going on and we spent some time talking about Jimmy and the Ray of Hope organization, which builds wheelchair ramps for those in need. I discovered that the nonprofit had built more than 500 ramps in northwest Florida alone and I knew that this man’s story, this ministry’s purpose, needed to be told in a book."

"Ray of Hope" was published through CreateSpace Independent Publishing. The book is available on www.Amazon.com for $10 and on Kindle for $7.99. All proceeds from the book’s sales will benefit the Ray of Hope nonprofit organization.

Lloyd is also the author of "Trussville, Alabama: A Brief History," "Deep Green," "Heart of the Plate" and "Valley Road: Uplifting Stories from Down South."

Lloyd has been a journalist in Mississippi and Alabama. He grew up in Trussville, Ala., and earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from The University of Alabama in 2009. He lives in Moody, Ala., with his wife, Jessica, and their two dogs, Abby and Sonny.

For more information, email garylloydbooks@gmail.com. Also visit www.garylloydbooks.squarespace.com and Like his author page at www.facebook.com/GaryLloydAuthor.

For more information about Ray of Hope, find the "Ray of Hope Wheelchair Ramps" page on Facebook.