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Smiling from the hospital bed. Not quite sure if I knew what was going on at this point, but I remember how happy the flowers made me feel.

Brittany’s Account:

August 26, 2012 started out like any other Sunday. Ehren, a friend and I took our dirt bikes out and were on our way to another trail via a remote asphalt highway when Ehren took off down another path unexpectedly (he was a ways ahead of us). I was watching where he was going and not what was in front of me when I hit the back of our friend’s bike, who had moved over and was slowing down to stop, at around 35-40 mph.

I don’t remember much until 3 days later in the hospital in Reno. Ehren had to fill me in: I had shattered my left collarbone, broken a rib, lacerated my spleen and left kidney (the internal bleeding had me in the ICU for 3 days), fractured my C1 and C2 vertebrae and had a basilar skull fracture. After a week in the hospital I was released with neck brace, arm sling, and stitches from my collarbone surgery.

The collarbone healed just fine, though I still have the metal plate and the scar to remind me. I had to be in the neck brace for 6 months but most of my movement came back. There’s still a tight spot in my left side that I imagine is scar tissue from the internal lacerations. And I didn’t find out until I broke my left thumb playing softball during the summer of 2015 that my left wrist had a nonunion fracture, likely another injury from the accident that wasn’t caught due to the severity of the other injuries.


At the Grand Canyon four months into the neck brace.

Our friend did get a little scratched up from the accident, but fortunately nowhere as severe as what happened to me. What was a very sobering thought in all of this, however, was that it could have been a lot more serious for them, and it would have been because of me not looking for two seconds because I decided to worry about a change of plan. Two seconds.

I’m very glad and thankful to be able to continue to do what I love, as I know there are many people who have suffered much worse and who may no longer have the choice. I don’t take anything for granted on the road anymore, and try my hardest not to get complacent.