'Hi guys. I have some bad news I want to tell you all.' So said seventeen-year-old Shaun Miller on YouTube in May 2012, shortly after receiving a devastating diagnosis about his heart condition. The clip has now been viewed millions of times.
In 1994, when Cameron Miller found out he was going to be a father, he hoped his boy would have an easier childhood than he'd had. Cameron had been in and out of hospital with chronic asthma and been relentlessly bullied. As it turned out, that had been the easy part. Life was about to get a lot tougher.
Before he was two weeks old, Cameron's son, Shaun, had his first operation. Suffering from Congenital Heart Disease (CHD), he had his second heart transplant when he was thirteen. Ultimately, he endured about 1000 medical procedures.
Through it all, Shaun maintained an incredibly positive outlook, inspiring children and adults alike. In his final days, he fulfilled his dream of making a cameo appearance on Neighbours and appeared on the AFL Footy Show, exchanging banter with his heroes.
Tragically, Shaun passed away only a few weeks after he'd posted his video, and his father struggled to cope. Suffering from crippling grief, Cameron attempted suicide and spent time in a psychiatric institution.
An Awesome Ride, however, is a story of hope. Only after reaching rock bottom did Cameron come to understand Shaun's message. Today, with the establishment of the Shaun Miller Foundation - he is the founder and CEO - Cameron is a warrior for all children with CHD and their families, just as he had been for his son.
Through his father, and through this book, Shaun's unbreakable spirit lives on.