New York Dragons WR/LB Chris Anthony started SpineLife, a not-for-profit organization, which assists athletes who have experienced spinal cord injuries or head trauma’s in sporting incidents. “Stand With Travis” is the first major project that SpineLife will undertake.
Anthony, who is entering his fifth season in the Arena Football League, was initially inspired to start SpineLife after tragically witnessing the death of Al Lucas — a player for the AFL’s Los Angeles Avengers — when the Dragons played the Avengers in 2005. Lucas passed away due to a spinal cord injury sustained in the game.
“I started SpineLife about a month ago. I was on the field with Al Lucas and just a few feet away from the play,” said Anthony. “This is what first inspired me.”
Following Lucas’ passing, Anthony was further inspired to get his organization running when Travis Hearn, a high school football athlete, suffered a spinal cord injury that paralyzed him this past September. Anthony did not know Hearn before his injury, but their hometowns were close by with Anthony being a native of Bettendorf Iowa and Hearn of Rock Island Illinois.
“After learning of Travis’ injury, it really just pushed me over the edge,” said Anthony. “I needed to do something.”
SpineLife now asks for everyone’s help in supporting Travis Hearn and his family through the recovery project.
StandWithTravis.com is a website that SpineLife launched this week where you can purchase a t-shirt or make a separate donation for Travis. In just a few days, orders have been coming in from across the country and with your help, goals can be met. Charles Wang and the New York Dragons also made a generous donation to assist Anthony in his efforts.
“Already the support has been great. We appreciate everyone reaching out and are hopeful that people will continue to visit StandWithTravis.com and continue to contribute,” said Anthony.
SpineLife seeks to not only assist financially, but also to educate the public on spinal cord injuries and head trauma’s. The organization will continue to develop the website StandWithTravis.com and make it an educational experience. Anthony seeks to take on more projects with his new organization and assist athletes and their families who are affected by these injuries, in every way possible. You can learn all about Travis at StandWithTravis.com.
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