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TBI Affected Man Helps Kids




"Johnny" is lucky being alive. For this column, he preferred using a pseudonym.

In 1997, he was motorcycling Highway 101 in Los Angeles from one job to another when traffic suddenly stopped in front of him. Said 61-year-old Johnny, "The vehicle ahead was a pickup truck. I hit his tailgate, and then I bounced off into the medium strip."

He usually didn't wear a motorcycle helmet, but was wearing one this day. Amazingly, the first person on the scene was a friend of his daughter. Ambulance workers only a few cars back kept him alive and transported him within minutes to a hospital less than a mile away.

He said, "If that ambulance hadn't been behind me, and if a hospital hadn't been there, and if I'd not been wearing a helmet, I'd be dead today."

He was in a coma three days with a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). About 80,000 Americans this year will incur substantial, long-term functioning losses from a TBI. It's the leading cause of long-term disability in children and young adults.

Johnny said, "Nowadays, my balance is off and my gait deteriorating. At first, I'd fall down only once in a while, but now I fall every day. I also have short-term memory and speech problems. I use a cane."

Johnny's wife runs a daycare business and sometimes he helps. One child in their care has fetal alcohol syndrome and another was born with Down syndrome. Said Johnny, "The child with Down syndrome is receptive to touch, loves to be held, and smiles big time. You can't resist being around this kid because she smiles so much. The child with fetal alcohol syndrome does things spur of the moment and has no fear or knowledge of consequences. People think he doesn't listen well, but the truth is he isn't able to listen well. But he has ways of communicating with me that he doesn't seem to have with other people."

Johnny enjoys helping his wife. He said, "Because I have a disability, I believe there are times when I'm more in tune with the needs of children with disabilities and more patient than most people. The biggest thing is I often can get through to the two kids (in terms of communication) when others can't. In working with children with disabilities, you have to be patient and show respect."





Placer County News Headlines

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Parking Fees being levied at Hidden FallsAUBURN, Calif. -- Placer County's Hidden Falls Regional Park in North Auburn is a gem of a park. Unfortunately, parking can be hard to find, especially during weekends

$22.5 Million Approved for Placer County BuildingsAUBURN, Calif. -- Placer County Board of Supervisors approve an investment plan that will allocate a minimum of $4.5 million annually over the next five years

Placer SPCA Sees Success in Waiving Adoption FeesRoseville, Calif. - Adoption fees are waived for all animals, without exception, at the Placer SPCA during the month of August for its "full hearts, empty kennels" campaign

Classic Car Show in Grass Valley August 25(Grass Valley, CA) Cascades of Grass Valley, a senior living community located at 415 Sierra College Drive in Grass Valley, will be hosting a classic car show on Friday, August 25

Warriors Set to Start 2017 Volleyball CampaignROCKLIN, Calif. - The William Jessup women's volleyball team will start the season this week hosting the Warrior Invitational

Podcasts for Fundraising Professionals and DonorsWith that goal in mind, Eric Hogue and David Pineschi of William Jessup University are regularly producing light-hearted podcasts each month

Mono County Events for Scenic Adventure SeekersMONO COUNTY, Calif. - After record-setting snowfall that refilled lakes and rivers, leaving glistening snow on high peaks and meadows below

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WJU Volleyball signs Isabella MauricioROCKLIN, Calif. - The women's volleyball head coach, Shasta Millhollin announced the signing of Isabella Mauricio from Foster City, Calif. to the 2017-18 roster.

Foam Fest Craft Beer and Live Music Festival[Olympic Valley, Calif.] - Achieve Tahoe (formerly Disabled Sports USA Far West) will host its 28th annual "Foam Fest" fundraising event

The Great Banquet in Roseville October 7thROSEVILLE, Calif., - Joni and Friends Sacramento will hold its fourth bi-annual event titled "The Great Banquet" at Bayside Church in Roseville on October 7, 2017


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