Tag: Family and Friends
Don’t let your spinal cord injury tank your self-esteem.
Forty-seven people get a spinal cord injury every day in the U.S. That’s more than 17,500 new spinal cord injuries each year. But for each of these people, the accident that causes their injury changes their entire lives.
Being born disabled means you learn how to live with your impairment from a young age. Being disabled due to an injury brings many mental challenges with a new type of loss. You have to take everything you knew about living your life and thrown it out the window. You go from being able to walk around on your own and take care of yourself to entirely depending on someone else to take care of most of your basic needs.
A twist of fate brought these friends closer than they had ever been.
CJ Bellamy, 29, and David Kellam, 30, were both paralyzed in separate incidents years apart, but now the childhood friends have banded together as workout partners and encourage each other daily.
DENVILLE, NJ – Eric LeGrand stopped by Riverview Elementary School in Denville to share pearls of wisdom with its third, fourth and fifth graders on Wednesday, April 3. Approximately 200 students attended the assembly to meet the former Rutgers University football player who now is confined to a wheelchair due to a spinal cord injury he sustained in a game during his junior year at Rutgers.
“We invited Eric LeGrand because his message supports our service-learning project,” explained Riverview Principal Christina Theodoropoulos, also a Rutgers alumna. Riverview students are working on bringing peace to themselves and others by having a positive mindset. The acronym ROCKET describes the project’s objectives – be respectful, optimistic, compassionate, kind, empathetic, and a team player.
It all started with rain-soaked wheelchair tire treads that patterned across the driveway of Jeremy Bigelow’s Holland home.
“I was driving through puddles in my driveway one day, and seeing the tracks all over the place, and I thought it would be cool to somehow paint my tires and put it on canvas,” said Bigelow, a quadriplegic since he injured his spinal cord in a car crash in 2010.
That revelation might have been the catalyst for a burgeoning art career that Bigelow says he never expected when this whole adventure began, but those closest to him would say it’s his attitude that propelled him into the Toledo area’s creative scene.
Drew Bell was born with Spina Bifida and uses a wheelchair to get around, but he wouldn’t let that dash his dream of marching with his school band.
It’s been eight years since the night of Rachelle Chapman’s Bachelorette party where a playful push into a pool left her quadriplegic.
Since then, Rachelle became a wife, starred in a TLC television show, joined a quadriplegic rugby team and became a mother.
“I literally don’t know what I did before I was a mom,” Chapman confessed. “She’s so entertaining.”
Mark Mickens’ smile said it all.
A snowmobile accident left Ryan Buck paralyzed from the chest down.
Ten years ago, Ryan Buck and Lauren Carlson had bright plans for their future. Ryan, 26, was a farmer in Goodhue, Minnesota, who sold crop insurance on the side. Lauren, 22, was attending school to become a dental hygienist. Farming was in his soul; she always dreamed of being a farm wife. Young, in love, and engaged to be married, the duo was ready to begin the rest of their lives and start their own farm family.
On Saturday, February 23, 2008, their path changed forever. Ryan left early in the morning to snowmobile with Lauren’s brother, Casey Carlson. They made the hour-long drive to Kellogg, Minnesota, and unloaded their snowmobiles around 8:30 a.m.
Robinette Tilley is the boss. The fact that she rides a wheelchair now instead of a motorcycle hasn’t changed that.
Tilley was in her customary spot, sitting behind her husband, Don, on his Harley-Davidson when the motorcycle crashed on Aug. 29, 2014 near Mile Post 394 on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Buncombe County. Don, 78, was killed in the wreck.
A shattered right arm, broken neck and pelvis, and seriously damaged spinal cord sent Robinette to six different hospitals in six months. Doctors told Tilley’s family she would never return home.
Brian Keefer has always been an adrenaline junkie.
A 2008 gymnastics accident in which Keefer suffered a spinal cord injury that left him a quadriplegic could have stopped him, but it didn’t.
“Brian’s had some adventures since he’s had his injury,” his father said.
From scuba diving in the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California, where “sharks swam right into my face,” to ziplining at Roundtop Mountain Resort in Lewisberry, Keefer has had his share.