Shad Sexton Jasonville, IN 10,170 Votes
My name is Shad. I incurred a C5 fracture July 1, 2012 swimming which makes me a quad. I was a senior. Before my injury i enjoyed basketball, football, hunting, fishing, swimming, dirt bikes and hanging out with friends. I was also active in my church in our bus ministry and children’s programs. since my injury I’ve been blessed and regained upper body strength that enables me to feed myself and to assist with transfers and some daily activities. I need therapy and medical monitoring to continue to improve. My biggest obstacle is transportation.
Because of my size (i am 6’5″ and weigh approx. 260 lbs.) combined with the weight of my wheelchair, I don’t fit in standard transport vehicles so transportation isn’t available for me in my area. Also, because we live in a rural area, there are no physicians so we have to travel to Chicago for treatment, inpatient therapy, etc. So not only does it eliminate social interaction, it also threatens my medical and therapy progress.
Currently, in order to keep my appointments, my mom has to rent a van from a location 100 miles away from our home, travel back to our home and then load everything up for our destination. She then has to bring me home and unload everything (and as we all know, that is a lot) then take the vehicle back to the rental location and drive home; this is very costly as well as time assuming and the provider that we use only has two vans that I can fit in so availability isn’t always an option there either.
Everybody says I’m an inspiration; that my attitude and determination through my injury encourages them to better themselves. My being a quad isn’t what’s disabling me. What’s disabling me is not having the tools I need to function to the best of my ability. I have excellent doctors, support group, and determination to move the mountains I face. I’ve learned, through therapy, that I can STILL play basketball, rugby, cycle, and not only finish high school but college as planned (to be a counselor/advocate). I just have a “new” normal.I’ve been asked to mentor due to the challenges I’ve faced and conquered and the mountains I face today and will continue to face. I believe it’s our responsibility to mentor in whatever situation. I need a vehicle to continue to do that