posted Jun 07, 2013
Injury Level: L2 & TBI
Injury Date: 8/29/2009
Brian is a bright, fun-loving 17 year old high school junior. He is an honor student at Marvin Ridge High School near Waxhaw, NC. He lives at home with his mom, dad and younger sister. His older brother attends UNC-Chapel Hill.
On Sat., 8/29/09, Brian went to a brand new local high school to practice guitar with his church youth group band. They were performing in a special program that night. Brian and a friend climbed up to the catwalk to check out the lighting setup for the stage. As he stepped off the catwalk towards the access ladder he fell through a gap in the safety railing. He fell 35 feet, ricocheted off the safety cage surrounding the access steps and landed on a concrete floor.
Brian was rushed to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte with a traumatic brain injury and shattered L2 vertebrae. He was semi-conscious for the first 1 ½ days after the accident, but underwent emergency brain surgery the next night to relieve the pressure and swelling of his brain. The neurosurgeon removed a large blot clot and part of Brian’s damaged left frontal lobe. The next few days were heartbreaking as Brian’s family and friends waited for him to regain consciousness. He struggled with collapsed lungs, pneumonia and several infections. Brian spent 2 weeks in the Surgical Trauma ICU before undergoing spinal fusion surgery to stabilize his shattered vertebrae.
On September 26th he was transferred to the 4th floor Rehab Unit of Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte where he remained until his discharge on Nov. 6th. Brian has had several surgeries since Nov. 6th and started back at school part-time in January. He is making steady progress in his recovery and has regained partial use of both legs.
Brian is upbeat and optimistic. He has a large support network of family and friends cheering him on. He is getting stronger every day and is determined to walk again.