Luke’s Story: Trust the professionals, trust God

“Trust the professionals to help you achieve what you think is impossible, and trust God to help you through any circumstance.”

I was 16 years old and snowboarding for the first time with friends and family. I was catching on really quickly, but the second time I attempted a jump I landed on my head. I was airlifted by ThedaStar and had two surgeries to insert a plate, two rods, a bunch of screws, and cadaver bones. Although there were no lacerations to my spinal cord, they told me there was less than a one-tenth of one percent chance I would ever regain movement and walk again.

After my surgeries, I had no strength or motor skills; I couldn’t even hold a spoon. I thought this would be my life. Thankfully the physical and occupational therapists said ‘heck no!’ That if I worked hard I could become completely independent. They worked me really hard and would show me videos of what I could learn to do again. I was like, there’s no way I can do that. But they were incredible. They helped me believe it and I had to trust them.

Therapy gave me a lot more ability than I thought I would have. I’ve since competed in wheelchair sports including 5ks and 10ks and am trying for the quad rugby team. I live on my own and am pursuing a degree in electrical engineering.