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Joanne Susi

"My life is separated into before and after. Before, I was a Senior Clinical Research Associate assisting in clinical trails with CAP working with Dana Farber, Tufts, Johns Hopkins, and others in Cancer research. Now I am a survivor and lucky to be alive". Read Kristin's story

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Maybe my story will make someone think twice...

July 4, 2007, is a day 28-year-old Shaye will always remember. That was the day his best friend fell off his skateboard and nearly died. Minutes before the accident, he had grabbed onto the back of Shaye’s truck to hitch a ride. Shaye saw him do it, smiled, and slowed as he turned right.

“I glanced into my side mirror just in time to see his body rolling and coming to a stop,” remembers Shaye. “I knew immediately that he was badly hurt.”

His friend barely survived the accident and was left with a serious brain injury. Shaye was charged with “driving to endanger.”  He was sentenced to two years probation and was required to attend Brains At Risk, the Brain Injury Association’s awareness and prevention program that links dangerous driving behaviors to the devastating effects of traumatic brain injury.

When Shaye attended the Brains At Risk class in December of 2007, it was a life-changing experience. “I got a lot out of it because I was living through it,” he says. He stayed after class and talked to the instructor. Later, his probation officer introduced him to BIA-MA’s manager of court-related programs who asked him to be a presenter for the program.

“Although I’m nervous, I’m excited to do it,” says Shaye. “Maybe my story will make someone think twice about how things can go so very wrong in the blink of an eye. ‘Stop and think about your best friend or your brother,’ I tell them. ‘Think about this happening to them and think about how you would feel.’

“I don’t want this to happen to someone else.”


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