PENDLETON, Ore. — The Umatilla County Courthouse received a new power chair charger last week, making it the 14th site in Umatilla County to receive a charger this summer.

The East Oregonian reports ( ) that the charger, a gray box containing an air-cooled, five-amp unit, is the brainchild of Pendleton’s Darrin Umbarger.

Umbarger relies on a wheelchair because of his multiple sclerosis. He dreamed up the charger two years ago as a way to mitigate dead battery fears.

He says he made a couple of chargers for Pendleton, and it expanded from there.

Pendleton was the first city in the United States to install the chargers, said Donnie Cook, superintendent of the Parks and Recreation Department.

The department alone put in 10, including two at the aquatic center.

Information from: East Oregonian,

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