Interview by Larissa Chelius | Submitted by Hannah Bockelman - OK Nomination and Photography by Mary Brandon
The Nomination: Hannah was in a car accident last summer on her 16th birthday. The crash caused severe injuries, such as the "hangmans break", a c2 break, a brachial plexus injury, and multiple fractures in her lower back. There was a 6 hour surgery to fuse her spinal cord, They were not sure she would ever walk again.
But a year later, she is not only walking, she has made the Laverne High School Cheer Squad!
How did you react or feel when the doctors said you may not be able to walk again? I didn’t let it phase me. It motivated me more to keep pushing. I just continued to try to rebuild my strength until I was eventually back to myself! I was very active in sports in school. I was involved in basketball, softball, track, cross country, and cheer. Being so involved motivated me to get back to my normal active self again. Although I am unable to play basketball and softball, I am still able to run track and cross country and do cheer!!
What got you interested in cheer? I started cheering when I was little, my mom was the cheer coach, so I was always around it and just fell in love. I also love to bring school spirit to my school!
Did the accident change your point of view on safety while driving? It taught me to become more aware of my surroundings and to realize that it can happen to everyone and I need to be cautious.
What do you plan on doing after high school? I plan on attending OSU and taking pre med courses! I’m currently undecided on what I want to do as an occupation, but I definitely want to be in the medical field.
Do you ever tell your story to help motivate others to get through their own hard times? I love to share my testimony to others to encourage them to never give up! And regardless of their struggles it’s going to be okay. Have faith and stay positive. Believe in yourself.