May 28, 1993

This page is dedicated to safety. One main aspect of which should be wearing a helmet while riding.

The pictures on this page are of my brother, James. He, like so many others,  wasn't wearing a 
helmet while riding a motorcycle. As you can see, he is what whe doctor could only describe as 
a "miracle".  

Hopefully after seeing this, I can convince you to NEVER ride without a helmet!!!!!!!!

These first two are James just after coming out of his coma.
The doctors removed a blood clot the size of a
tennis ball from the center of his brain.  In the pic above, you 
can see the scar from the craniotomy done to relieve the pressure 
of his brain swelling.

He also almost lost his right hand.  Still today it doesn't have full
range of motion, but that's ok because he was paralyzed on his left and
still isn't strong there.
It took a while, but he was finally able to start trying to feed himself.  Here, 
even though he's conscious and up in a wheel chair (which he was tied in to 
because he couldn't sit up on his own),he didn't have much of an idea of where he 
was or what was going on around him.

After a few more weeks.  He was started on a program to help
him learn how to walk again. In this pic, he had no idea 
of how to put one foot in front of the other so he could 
move forward.  Being paralyzed on his left side, they would talk 
him into putting his right foot forward, then push his left
foot forward for him.
The Story
    James missed a turn one night and crashed
into a wooden post, you know, the kind that
resembles any tree or fence post you are used
to riding around. The night his accident 
happened, the doctors told us not to make the 
1.5 hour drive because James wouldn't make 
it until we arrived. To say the least, my mom
didn't give a damn what the docs said.  We 
were on our way anyhow.  James remained in a 
coma for about 2 weeks. No one knew if he was
ever going to wake up or not.  That is how fast
it can happen, one minute you have a brother 
that you like to go and visit and have fun with,
and the next you don't even know if you will
ever talk to him again.
    I guess that someone above us must have 
wanted him to stay alive. After 18 long years
of recovery, he lives on his own, although he can't 
understand why no one will give him a job. He 
doesn't know it is because he is like an 
immature 20 something year old. In fact, 
he is 43 years old and may not be able to get a 
job for the rest of his life simply because he wasn't
wearing a helmet.  

   Helmets Save Lives!


Spring 2001

May will be 8 years since the accident. He still lives on his own.  Had a job, 
but lost license after a couple of weeks so, lost job, so he usually blows his money,
by the end of the month and goes hungry.  He has enough money, just doesn't comprehend 
how to manage it.   He still has a very, very short fuse, and doesn't comprehend the idea
of proper talking(not vulgar).  Still gets better though.

December 2001 

We've had some problems in the past year.  He moved back home (a very small town).  We thought 
people there would understand and treat him better.  How much more wrong could we be.  It 
amazed me.  So, now he's back in a bigger town, and has just moved in with a roommate (someone in 
a similar situation).  Just went through some mental testing, so far results are very good.

September 2002

Well, a lot has happened this past year.  It has come a time in our lives that we hoped we would 
never have to come to.  We are going to have to take legal control over his life and his finances.
He has gotten into financial trouble again and has demonstrated that he can not handle himself.  
This has been one of the hardest decisions we have had to make since his accident.  We have been 
forced to realize that James may never heal and be able to live normal ever again.  We definetely 
are not giving up on him, this is just what has to be done for now.  Be safe in whatever you do.  
You never know what will happen to you in the blink of an eye.  May God watchover you.  

edit to add:  We only ended up with taking a power of attorney for him.  We did have to control 
his money for his bills and food for quite while.

Feb, 2011
It's been a few years. An old acquaintance of James' got in touch with me today. She hadn't seen or known of him since she saw him in the hospital in '93. Thank you Tara! Got me to thinking I could give an update again. James still lives on his own, and is doing quite good. He lived in Montana for a couple of years. He's been in Rapid City for a little over a year now. He got his driver's license a couple of years ago while in Montana. He met a couple that actually gave him a car to drive. I think it's a '94 Blazer. Not much, but to him it's like gold. To not have to rely on someone else for everytime he even needed groceries was huge for him. It didn't come without responsibility though, and trouble. Just another lesson learned for him. He seems to me to be walking slower and is hurting a little more than last time. I'm afraid someday that arthritis will really take a toll on him. He is happy in Rapid City. There are a lot of disabled vets up there, and he gets along very well with them. He is proud of his short time in the Army Reserves. I spent 6 years in the Army National Guard. Our dad was in the guard, and grandpa was infantry in WWII.

Me and James December 2010

May God Bless You.