Actively Supported Tighten Injured Recipients Success Stories!
At 21, Aaron suffered a C6-T1 injury as a result of a motorcycle accident when a driver made a left turn in front of him. Since his accident in Jan 2014, he got his drivers license, is pursuing a college degree, is a tournament angler, photographs his travels, writes and advocates for disabled outdoor recreational access. Aaron has recently been medically approved for his Mariners Captains License so that he may introduce others to the wonderfully healing adventures he pursues on the water.
In April 2015, at age 26, Austin was involved in a car accident that left him paralyzed at the C5-7 level. Before his accident, he fished nearly everyday. Since his accident, he has modified his truck (it's way cool) and he works as a Civil Engineer part time.
In April 2007, at 19, Bryce was involved in a single car accident that left him paralyzed from the chest down at the C4-5 level. Since then, Bryce enjoys being in the outdoors, especially driving his adapted Airboat. He loves hunting and fishing and hanging out with his friends. He was able to modify a truck for driving and just tries to stay healthy and enjoy life.
At 17, Camryn suffered a C5 injury as a result of a BMX accident trying to avoid a younger rider. Since his accident in May 2016, he went on to graduate from high school, got his drivers license, enrolled in college and is finishing a degree in Architectural Design. Camryn recently proposed to girlfriend Nikki and they are planning to marry in 2024. Camryn has 5 siblings and enjoys spending time with his family.
At 30, Christina suffered a T2 injury when she fell over a cliff while walking her dog. Both she and her dog survived after spending a cold night on the mountainside. Since her accident in June 2015, she moved to Florida to live a more independent life and continues to pursue outdoor activities which she enjoys. She is an avid angler and loves fly fishing and shallow water inshore.
In Dec 2013, after serving in our military as an Army Captain, David suffered a T5 injury as the result of a motorcycle accident when his bike hit a pothole in California. Since then, David has been an advocate for paralyzed Veterans and has engaged in almost every imaginable adaptive activity. He continues to work hard and is open to trying new medical opportunities that will help paralyzed individuals have degrees of recovery.
David recently opened a Wellness facility in Spring Hill, FL called Cryo-eeze with many types of equipment to help those with various physical conditions. Check it out! https://www.facebook.com/cryoeezespringhill
In Sept, 2020 Derek was a passenger in a near fatal car accident at the age of 19. He suffered a T7-8 injury leaving him a young paraplegic. Since his accident, he has participated in adaptive fishing and just received his adaptive driving license in 2022.
In August 1996, at 21, Eric was paralyzed at the T10 level when he fell while serving in the military. Since then, Eric maintained his independence and loves the outdoors, competing in all types of activities. He enjoys fishing and competes in Paralympics as well as many other types of adaptive sports. You just can't slow this guy down!
In July 2017, Erin was paralyzed at the C5-6 level at 21 in a freak accident when a chimney toppled down on top of the hammock she was sitting in . Since that time, Erin has graduated college, she bought and adapted a home in Florida and is back doing rehab therapy. She would like to start driving again and is pursuing a career in Disability Law.
In June of 2015, at 6 years old, Hayden was a front seat passenger in a vehicle when his grandmother, the driver, suffered a medical emergency and crashed. He was left a high quadriplegic at the C3-5 level. Hayden has not let his injury slow him down or change his outlook on life. He recently had an Award named after him from his school that will be given to other students who exemplify the courage and positive outlook that Hayden has everyday. He is unforgettable if you are blessed to meet him.
In August 1991, at 15 years old, Ian jumped into the water FEET FIRST and hit the bottom. The impact compressed his spine and caused paralysis at the C2 level. This level of injury is almost always fatal. However, Ian survived and learned to thrive. He began writing and hopes to publish a book soon. He married in 2007 and has been happily married for 15 years! Ian took up photography and is always open to try new therapies, including pilates and he attends events which support Spinal Injured. His subtle sense of humor and ability to make people laugh make him such a joy to be around. Each year, Ian creates a calendar of some of his photography that can be purchased at www.IansPhotos.net
In July 2018, at 16 years old, Joey did a backflip off a bridge and over rotated landing flat on his back paralyzing him instantly at the C6 level. Although he had a fracture at that level, he functions more like a paraplegic having use of his hands and upper body. After his accident, he attended activity based therapy and went back to school as soon as he was able and graduated. Soon after he started driving again and enjoyed networking with others who have sports cars. Joey loves fishing and outdoor activities and continues to pursue things he enjoys doing.
In July of 2019, at 12 years old, Kaylee's family was hit head on by a driver who crossed the center line. Kaylee suffered a T12 burst fracture and spinal cord compression. After intense therapy 4 days a week for a year, she was able to move her legs. Today, she is able to walk with a walker! Kaylee will graduate with an LPN license and recently passed her adaptive learners permit to be able to drive! Before her accident, Kaylee participated in martial arts, cheerleading & softball.
In August 2012, Kirk was a 21 year old on his way to work when he dozed off on a 3 hour drive to work and lost control of his vehicle. He went in and out of consciousness until he awoke in the hospital on a ventilator and was told he was a C5-6 quadriplegic from a cervical spinal cord injury. Since his accident, Kirk is finishing his Accounting degree, has a modified truck he drives, enjoys the outdoors and still works out to keep his body healthy. Kirk wants "everyone to realize that everyday we are blessed with a day to improve who we were the day before physically, mentally and emotionally. I want to help others realize that no matter who you are today, you are a better you than you were yesterday. "
In June 2018, at age 17, Kolton lost control of his truck on a wet road ejecting him from his vehicle and leaving him paralyzed at the T12 level. Kolton was a 6' 2" , 270 lb high school football player at the time and very athletic. After his accident, he worked out at home and with a personal trainer. He works part time and started his own Drone business. He drives a very sweet bright yellow Mustang, and fishes with his brothers and dad as often as he can!
In October 2012, Layla was paralyzed at 6 weeks old at the T11-L1 level. Layla started life in therapy working with her legs and wearing braces as well as being in a wheelchair to get around, it's just part of her life. Layla loves to dance and enjoys acting as well as doing things with her family. What an amazing recovery she has had as she perseveres with such a great attitude.
In Dec 2017, at age 18, Mariah was instantly paralyzed when she fell asleep at the wheel severing her spinal cord and breaking her back at the T12 level. Mariah was a barrel racer and has come full circle working her way back to being able to continue competing on her horse using leg straps. Mariah later suffered unbelievable tragedy when a inexperienced unlicensed driver hit her truck a few years later taking the life of her soulmate Cameron. Mariah works out on her own to stay active and is renovating a tiny house to live completely independent. She works as a Vet Tech, loves the outdoors and pushes forward despite all she's been through.
In August 2008, at 18 years old, Melissa was paralyzed at the nearly fatal C3 level when she lost control of her truck after being run off the road by an aggressive driver while trying to get home after a night of partying with high school friends. She has made it her mission to share her message that one bad decision can change your life. She is open and honest about her choices and claims full responsibility for it. She speaks publicly to students, DUI offenders, groups & organizations to try to deter them from making the same mistake. She has published her Biography called Hope, Love and Me and is working on her second book. She started a 501c3 non profit of the same name and she graduated in 2022 with a Masters Degree in non profit business. She pursued driving again & passed her drivers course now driving to her favorite coffee shop. Through her diligent therapy program, she has regained use of her shoulders & arms to the point that she can now feed herself & hold her own coffee cup. It's been life changing. She taught herself to paint with limited mobility of her arms and donates them to charity. She is an unforgettable woman that spreads joy and laughter everywhere she goes. www.hopeloveandme.org
In June 2009, at the age of 25, Molly was paralyzed at the C5-6 level when she lost control of her truck and rolled 6 times. With her young son strapped into his car seat, he escaped injury and was perfectly ok. Molly has been a wheelchair bound Mom for 13 years but attends every school function, sporting & church event her boys participate in. Finances have kept Molly from doing many of the rehabilitative things she dreams of but she is a true adventurer at heart and has been skiing, skydiving & surfing participating in as many adaptive activities as she can. She has a quiet humble spirit and radiates grace.
In April 2019, at the age of 18, Nate was paralyzed at the T3-4 level when a car pulled out in front of him while he was riding his motorcycle to work. He was a certified Crossfit trainer and has returned to his gym as a trainer since his accident. He started driving again and works out as often as he can. He has never been one to quit or give up and is determined to regain as much strength as possible. He played baseball and football in high school and enjoys fishing & the outdoors. Nate started his own YouTube channel helping others with recovery.
In April 2021, at the age of 22, Ray was paralyzed at the T12 level in a dirt bike accident. Ray was always fishing and spending time in the outdoors before his accident and has let nothing get in his way of continuing to pursue being back on the water. He has modified his flats boat console so that he can drive it from his chair or with leg braces. Ray has had his own business since high school called Reef Mafia where he concentrates on apparel and tackle. You can find him at https://www.instagram.com/ReefMafia/ and look for a website soon.
In April 2016, at the age of 22, Sam was paralyzed at the C4-5 level in a freak hammock accident when he unexpectedly flipped and his feet became entangled dumping him on his head. An avid surfer who lived on the water, his accident took that ability away, however he finds enjoyment by photographing surfers on the east coast and has a drone license to get spectacular footage from above. It allows him to explore and go where he can't from a wheelchair. Sam set up a bus with his sister called Special Skoolie and wants to adapt a van so he can travel more. He also works part time as a Social Media Content Manager.
In May 2019, at the age of 13, Valerie was paralyzed at the T7-8 level as a passenger in a motor vehicle accident. Since that time, Valerie has had multiple surgeries for secondary complications but fights everyday to overcome her injury. Valerie was able to get a therapy dog that has helped her through many of her struggles as she continues to do therapy and engage in adaptive sports, go to school and live life.