This year I’m hiking with my family in honor of my son Jesse. I’d like to introduce you to our Team. Our Team Captain is my wife Cindy, the center of our wonderful family. I’m Sherm, and I’ve done the Pikes Peak Challenge Summit Hike a half dozen times in support of the Brian Injury Alliance. This year I’m thrilled to be joined on the Pikes Peak Challenge Summit Hike by my son’s Matt, Tim, and Bob. We have formed Team Jesse to honor our son and brother who was diagnosed as a suicide in 2009. Jesse’s Mom Cindy and I and his brothers, his son Ethan, and extended family struggle to understand and accept that we may never know the answers to our questions as to what happened. What we do know is that Jess received a number of concussions playing baseball. One example was Jesse being knocked unconscious in a high school game from a fastball to the head, but returned to play when regaining consciousness. We know today that that he never should have returned to play that day. Jesse should have been evaluated prior to returning and a deeper evaluation for other potential symptoms. We will always wonder if parent and coaching lack of understanding could have contributed to what happened to Jesse. Did Jesse have a traumatic brain injury? Could proactive education have helped? Where there signs that we missed? Could Jesse have benefited from the BIAC network of help?
Team Jesse’s goal is to help the Brain Injury Alliance make a difference in improving safety and improving the lives of survivors of brain injury through support and guidance. A lot has been learned in recent years and the “Jake Snakenberger Act” was recently signed into law in Colorado by Governor Hickenlooper to prevent players from returning to play until being checked by a Doctor and undergoing a waiting period. Great strides have been made in helmet safety, support groups, case management, information awareness and access. We want to honor the memory of Jesse through our Team Jesse efforts to help the BIAC and their ongoing efforts to improve safety and help the lives of survivors.
There are over 500,000 Coloradans living with the effects of an injury to the brain. Life can seem hard and insurmountable without support and guidance. The Brain Injury Alliance of Colorado is the go-to resource for help and services for survivors of an injury to the brain, their families, and providers.
I’m proud and excited to share my families commitment to participate as Team Jesse in the 2017 Pikes Peak Challenge Summit Hike. When we finish, we will have hiked 13 miles and 7,400 vertical feet to the 14,110 foot summit of Pikes Peak.
Even more impressive than this challenge, is the courage and strength it takes for a survivor to overcome day to day struggles that come with a life of living with an injury to the brain.
Please donate now and together we can make a huge impact in prevention of brain injuries, for brain injury survivors, and the entire brain injury community.
Team Jesse (Cindy, Matt, Tim, Bob & Sherm)