Sometimes all it takes is one moment — one second — to permanently alter the course of our life in ways we can’t even fully imagine until it happens. A moment that, even years later, will be spoken about in terms of before and after.
While on a family hunting trip in October 2006, Austin Charters was accidentally shot in the neck from two feet away. The bullet shattered his C5 vertebrae, rendering him a quadriplegic. Suddenly, he could no longer pick things up and felt no movement from his chest down.
Prior to the accident, Austin was involved in numerous sports and activities, from BMX bike racing to running on the cross-country team. At just 12 years old, getting used to his new normal and returning to school wasn’t easy.
“It was pretty hard to adjust,” he says, “but I knew I had a good support group, so I wanted to get back on campus as soon as possible.”
From seventh grade through high school, a specially trained nurse was there to address his needs and help him take notes throughout the day.