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John Bisnar
John Bisnar
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Brain Injury Sidelines Aspiring Newscaster:

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Twenty-four year old aspiring newscaster Brian Kelly hobnobbed with the likes of former President Bill Clinton, and reporters for such shows as Good Morning America and NBC Nightly News before his car collided with a 35-foot-long bookmobile back in Chicago in 2001, causing severe and traumatic brain injuries.

The collision nearly took Brian’s life. He was given last rites four times. Initially, Brian was unable to communicate, and he was fed through a tube and could barely walk.

After over three years of rehabilitation Brian’s severe brain injury leaves him without long and short-term memory, even forgetting what he said a few hours ago. Brian also needs a companion as he gets lost easily, and his only memories of his past are those that his family has given him. With the help of his family and former broadcasting contacts, Brian now works as an advocate for others who have suffered brain injuries and he is even helping to lobby the U.S. Post Office for a stamp that would honor and raise money for those who have brain injuries.

Every year in this country, nearly 1.5 million cases of Traumatic Brain Injury are reported. Approximately 50,000 of those people die and another 80,000 people suffer disabilities, as Brian certainly did. Nearly 5.3 million people in this country live with a disability that was caused by a Traumatic Brain Injury.

Top brain injury treatment can cost into the hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, and according to some research can increase the likelihood of early onset Alzheimer’s disease.

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month, which is dedicated to helping the public learn more about brain injury, because the Center for Disease Control estimates that at least 5.3 million Americans have a life long need for help to perform the most basic daily activities due to a Traumatic Brain Injury, and every year at least 1.4 million persons will sustain a Traumatic Brain Injury.

Please drive sober and rested – and drive defensively. Don’t become a statistic!