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Hal Hargrave Jr

The day that changed Hal's life

Hal woke up early on July 26th, 2007 to drive a load of remodel supplies in a semi-truck to crews working in Las Vegas, NV. As he passed the Barstow area on I-15, he noticed an object on the road in the distance. As he got closer, he could tell that it was a large piece of tire tread in his path. Hal veered to the right shoulder to avoid it but lost control of the truck while correcting to come back on to the road.

The truck rolled four times before coming to a stop.  Hal was trapped in the crushed cab for 40 minutes before being airlifted by Life Flight to Arrowhead Regional Hospital in Colton, CA.

The scene of the accident as rescue workers free Hal from the truck.

The scene of the accident as rescue workers free Hal from the truck.

Hal broke his neck, broke his scapula – there was tendon damage to his right shoulder.  He fractured T1-2 Vertebrae – with the most damaging injury to the Spinal Cord at the C5/C6 level.

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Arrowhead Regional performed an eight-hour surgery in order to install permanent plates/screws on the front and back of his neck.  He remained at Arrowhead Regional for several weeks battling a strong case of pneumonia and a collapsed lung well. 

Hal was then cared for at Casa Colina, a fantastic facility where he spent 63 days as an Acute Patient. After this, Hal was released to Outpatient Recovery.

How Hal found hope

During Hal’s time at Casa Colina, he had a lot to process. Everything had changed.

Before this accident, Hal was a very ordinary young man. He had recently graduated high school where he was pitching an 87mph fastball on the baseball team and benching pressing 315lbs with friends. With plans to attend Long Beach University, Hal was spending his summer reaching new goals like landing a back-flip on a wakeboard. 

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Now, he had to grapple with the flood of implications of paralysis.

The doctors said there was a 1-3% chance that he would ever walk again. Despite this news, Hal’s emotional and mental outlook was strong.  This was due to one single line of thinking Hal carried with him that made the future feel brighter – he could still “be perfect”. Inspired by the movie Friday Night Lights, the idea was that if you could look the people you love in the eye and tell them that you did absolutely everything you could – gave every ounce you had – then it didn’t matter whether you won or lost. Hal realized that he could “Be Perfect” whether or not he ever walked another day in his life. He just had to concretely resolve his personal health and recovery as far as possible.

Hal met other paralysis patients in similar situations with the same goal. Men and women who were determined to pursue recovery and restoration no matter what. But they had a problem – their medical insurance only covered therapy with the goal of maintaining their condition. What they wanted was therapy that had the goal of reversing and redeeming their condition. They wanted to do basic things again like drive, take a shower on their own, or make sandwiches for their children’s lunch-boxes. And they were willing to fight for it.  They didn’t want to sit on the sidelines the rest of their lives – they wanted to get back in the game.

Be Perfect is born

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THIS INSPIRED HAL TO CREATE BE PERFECT – AN ORGANIZATION THAT CONNECTS TWO GROUPS OF PEOPLE STRIVING TO “BE PERFECT”.

The first group are paralysis patients wanting to get back in the game of life without the financial means to do so. The second group are community members wanting to use their resources in a meaningful way. Hal knew that right here in the San Gabriel Valley there were individuals who wanted to “Be Perfect” – to know without a doubt they had used their resources in a way that tangibly changed the lives of people who needed help. 

Together these two groups of people make up Team Be Perfect – a team of people committed to making their lives count.

In the last 7 years, we’ve watched this team grow larger than Hal ever dreamed. Today, this team continues to gain strength and helps to create more hope and wellness every day. But don’t just take our word for it – go read their stories here. And if you’re interested in joining the team of amazing people making this possible – we’d love to have you along for the ride. We sincerely believe that no matter where you’re at in life you have what it takes to “Be Perfect”.

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Hal along with his parents, brother and sisters.

Hal along with his parents, brother and sisters.


Hal's Journey – Photo Gallery

Jennifer Bou Lahoud

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Date of Injury:  December 28, 2008

Type of Injury:  Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Thoracic Spine 10-11 (vertebrate) 

How the injury happened:  I was involved in a sledding accident where I fell on my back and dislocated two vertebra at T 10-11 which caused my spinal cord to bruise. The doctor’s diagnosis: I would never be able to walk again.  She continued by saying there were no medical treatments that would repair the injury caused to my spinal cord. One insignificant fall from a sled on a small hill in Big Bear, California changed my entire world.

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What type of assistance has Be Perfect provided for you, and how has that helped you regain an independent and active lifestyle?  I attend therapy on a regular basis. Every session at therapy, I am getting closer and closer to my goals. If I continue at this pace, I should be able to accomplish my goals of walking independently with a walker. By continuing my therapy, I will be not only physically healthier but also mentally and emotionally. In doing therapy and continuing to improve, I will be able to show others in my community that anything is possible. It has always been a goal to be an advocate of SCI community.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again?  

Before the day that changed my life, I attended St. Lucy’s Priory High School and played basketball for the city of San Dimas. Basketball was everything to me. I loved the feeling of the ball in my hand, dribbling it at my control, and hearing the sound of the net whishing when it made it in.  But it all changed in a single moment.

I was denied to return to St. Lucy’s because of my disability but I did not give up on my education. I finished off my junior year by home schooling and then enrolled at San Dimas High School for my senior year.  I was able to maintain a 4.0 GPA and continue my physical therapy.

With the support of the Be Perfect community, trainers, and friends, I was continuously motivated to continue my education. In December of 2014, I graduated from the University of Southern California (USC) thanks to the Swim with Mike Scholarship for physically disabled athletes. During my time there, I double majored in Neuroscience and Psychology. In May of 2016, I graduated USC again from the Master of Science in Applied Psychology Program. At both graduation, my primary trainer, Jenna Hardy, stood next to me as walked across the stage to obtain my diploma.

As I enter in the real world and look for a job, I have been able to network within the Be Perfect community in hopes to working in the Human Resource Department.

How has The Perfect Step helped you if applicable?  I rely on my dreams and my motivations to shape my world.  I have aspired to never give up on my dream to walk again and that is my underlying accomplishment. I devote my energy to rigorous exercise-based rehabilitation to regain motor ability in my legs. Working to my maximum capacity each day has allowed me to see significant improvements in my muscles and motor abilities. I have regained some movement and can currently take steps with the assistance of ankle foot orthopedics (AFOs) braces and a walker.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself, that you are proud to say that you have attained?  Since attending The Perfect Step, I have gained tremendous strides in my recovery. I am now able to crawl in all directions, walk with the assistance of a walker and braces, and overall remained physically healthier.

What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve?  My short-term health goal is to remain physically healthy and stand independently. If I continue at this pace, I should be able to accomplish these goals.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?  At every session of therapy, I am getting closer and closer to my goals and it is possible because of you. I remain strong-minded, determined, motivated, and willing to continue my fight to walk again!

Steve Campbell

Date of Injury:  October 2010

Type of Injury:  Spinal Cord Injury (SCI), Cervical Spine 5-6 (vertebrate), Complete

How the injury happened:  During a bike ride I crashed and was thrown over the handle bars of my bicycle, landing head-first on the sidewalk. I damaged my C-5/C-6 vertebrae and my spinal cord. I am paralyzed from the chest, down. Because of the level of my injury my hands are closed into a fist and I don’t have the use of my triceps.

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What type of assistance has Be Perfect provided for you, and how has that helped you regain an independent and active lifestyle?  I am very grateful for my scholarship from the Be Perfect Foundation. Without it I could not afford to workout with a trainer at The Perfect Step (TPS). Over the years with TPS I have developed my upper body and core strength, so I could get out of my power chair and into a manual wheelchair. My wife has a neuromuscular disease, so she is limited with how much she can move and assist me. With my membership to TPS she is able to go into The Claremont Club to workout to stay in the best shape that she can and slow down the impairment that she has. As I get stronger I become more independent and I don’t need to ask her for as much assistance for everyday tasks.

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How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again?  Being involved with Be Perfect and knowing Hal Hargrave keeps me striving to better myself by being the best husband and dad I can be even though I’m in a chair. When you’re part of the Be Perfect family, there’s no excuse not to move forward and carry on with confidence.

How has The Perfect Step helped you if applicable?  TPS is more than a gym to my wife and me. As we’ve gotten to know other clients, wives and moms it has served as a support group, too. I talk to others about how they deal with life in a chair and we share experiences. We talk to wives and mothers about being caregivers and share those experiences too. We share ideas and it benefits all of us.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself, that you are proud to say that you have attained?  Working-out over the years at TPS I have been able to regain a lot of my upper body strength and core strength for my trunk control. When I started there I was using a power wheelchair. Over time I was able to use a manual chair every day. That was an important goal for me. At stores and restaurants I am able to push myself up the cut-out ramps from the parking lots to the sidewalks without any assistance. It took a while, but I can also push myself up the ramp from the parking lot to TPS’s front door. It’s a good warm-up before I workout. Also, it was a bicycle accident that caused my Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) as I was an avid bicycle rider. I’m back out there riding again but now it’s on a handcycle. It’s great to be out riding again. It’s a fun way to get in a workout and it keeps my spirits high.

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What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve?  With Be Perfect’s support I can continue to stay strong and healthy. I’m working on my next goal which is to work on strengthening my shoulders and upper back more to improve my posture. I’m tall and I spend every day in my wheelchair, so my posture needs improving. I’m also working on being able to transfer from my wheelchair to a couch and back again and the front seat of our car. Right now I’m in a wheelchair van where I stay in my chair and my wife uses straps to keep my chair in place.

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Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?  My family and I would like to say, “Thank You,” to all of the donors that give generously to the Be Perfect Foundation. There are many charities out there you could donate to and I really appreciate that you believe in what the Be Perfect Foundation is doing for so many people living with a SCI. Also, a big thank you to all of the volunteers who keep Be Perfect ticking.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?  Myself and other clients get to workout with Specialists that understand our bodies and know what each of our strengths and weaknesses are. They get us out of our chairs and put us to work on exercise machines to strengthen those weaknesses. Getting to know others who deal with life in a wheelchair and working-out at TPS improves our quality of life.

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Jason Smoot

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Jason's story is familiar. It has all of the elements common to the stories of the people we help. He had lived decades of life with a fully functioning body. Then, in an instant, in the middle of a normal activity – something familiar, something routine – everything changed.

Jason was enjoying time at the pool. He decided it was time to get back in, and took a dive. His body collided with the concrete, resulting in a C-4/ C-5 spinal cord injury.

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Jason is now in recovery at The Perfect Step and is seeing the results of physical therapy. He has been pleased to notice that he's gained strength in his arms, back, stomach, and core. But what's most amazing to him is that his therapy isn't all about his physical capabilities. Jason is improving in many other ways.

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Gaining mental strength is a big part of Jason's story. He has felt his confidence growing, and loves meeting the other people training alongside him. Jason says, "I look forward to going to  The Perfect Step every week, because every time I leave I feel like I improved... not only in health but as a person. Most importantly, I think it has made me a better father to my son, Jayden."

It's stories like this one that get us excited. Jason exemplifies what it means to "Be Perfect".  In the face of such difficult circumstances, he would seem to have every reason to be bitter and defeated -- but instead he's chosen to rise up and get back in the game of life.  

John Surina

The story of a man who will not stop doing what he loves

His story...

John started working at Coca-Cola in 1983, where he was employed until he was injured.  John married his wife, Georgia, in August of 1984.  John has two sons, Michael and Patrick.  Prior to his accident, a typical day for John started at 4 in the morning, rushing home at around 3 or 4 in the afternoon, then out again taking the boys to baseball, soccer or whatever activities they where involved in. Most of the time, John was the one coaching their teams.  Even in high school, John was involved with the sports boosters club to help with events.

 On Saturday, May 21, 2011, at 3:15 A.M. John woke up thinking he was late for work.  After John figured out he wasn’t going to work, he went down the hall to check on the boys.  John then decided to go downstairs, where there he mis-stepped causing him to go into a head first slide (unfortunately he wasn’t on a baseball diamond this time).  John then laid at the bottom of his stairs not able to move from the neck down.  John was then rushed to the hospital only to be diagnosed as a Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)  Cervical Spine 5 (vertebrate), incomplete quadriplegic.

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IN HIS OWN WORDS

"We were very lucky to end up at Casa Colina rehab hospital.  I was surrounded by family and friends. Even though the outlook was bleak I knew I was not alone. We were all in for therapy as every little of movement gave us reason for hope for recovery.  The next couple of months we were living in the moment, trying any type of therapy, exercise that would help my recovery.  I pretty well knew then I would not be returning to work.  My wife and my sister made sure that the bills would be paid.  To let me think of the future would only be too depressing. We went one day at a time."

"I was able to receive therapy as an out patient at Casa Colina for 18 months after my injury, this was covered by my insurance.  It was at one of the SCI support group meetings that I met Hal Hargrave.  It turns out he went to school with my son Michael at the University of La Verne.  That is when I first learned about the Be Perfect Foundation and The Perfect Step (TPS).  TPS gives me a chance to work with trainers who specialize in working with Spinal Cord Injuries.  In return I get the opportunity to continue working on my strength and balance.  As most of the clients at TPS are SCI, we give each other hope as we improve. It is a new friendship of strangers pushing and praising each other through our daily grind."

WHAT JOHN DOES TO KEEP HIMSELF IN RECOVERY

"After about 2 months of my injury, my friends wanted to hold a golf tournament to help us out,” Surina said. "They knew I would not be going back to work and the cost for meds and renovating our house would by high. Their effort was tremendous... as there were over 250 golfers and over $20,000 raised to help us out.  Since then, we have had poker, horseshoe and bowling tournaments.  Currently, from October to May, there is a "Friends of John Surina" bowling league.  Yes, I do bowl an average of 98 still, but I’m still getting better.  Even though this all helps us, we do it because my friends enjoy seeing each other.  As we get older and start our own families we have a tendency to drift away from our friendship.  A lot of people feel bad for my accident, but it has brought a lot of people closer together and a lot of re-connection."

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What John is doing now

"Currently I am coaching baseball with my son at Chino High School.  I have coached football, but baseball is my first love and I am looking forward to this season. Another thing I have been doing off and on for the last four years is working with 1st and 2nd year Physical Therapy students from APU and Western U.  I call myself their guinea pig as they are getting ready for a career as therapists. I am very happy to help them any way I can.”

John is a testament of the model BP Client, who strives to get the most out of his life everyday.

YOU CAN HELP GIVE HOPE TO SOMEBODY LIKE JOHN!

Jared Avalos

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What were you doing at the age of 13? Were you playing youth sports? Going out on the weekends with friends to do outdoors things? Certainly, many of the fortunate ones, who are reading this in fact, are people who had that luxury. For young Jared Avalos, of Whittier, California, these luxuries are something that he does not get to take full advantage of on the weekends—they are simply his goals and dreams.

As a kid, Avalos loved to play soccer with his friends at school, enjoyed bike-riding, and living life at a fast pace. Jared also liked to race his friends at school out on the track. Even when Jared was forced to put some of his favorite childhood activities aside, he has still been an incredible grandson to his grandmother and loves helping her around the house cleaning, cooking, and washing clothes. Many of these activities Jared has had to put on hold because of a sudden neurological disorder, Transverse Myelitis, that has attacked his spinal cord leaving him paralyzed. As a result of this life-changing neurological disorder, Jared has been unable to enjoy some of his favorite activities like playing with friends at recess, or kicking the soccer ball around, or getting to ride his bike with his brother.

But, do not let any of this fool you; even as a young teenager, Jared has become a model for what each and every one of us needs to strive to be as a person. His consistent optimistic mentality through his young recovery process has been contagious—he knows and believes that with each day, he is taking small steps in the right direction to becoming an active kid again.

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Be Perfect sponsors Jared to stay on his path to recovery at The Perfect Step (TPS).  As a result of our loyal donor support, Jared has been making tremendous strides since he started in the program in July of 2016. Jared found out about TPS through his P.E. teacher who knew another one of Be Perfect’s client, Kody Peraita, who also attends TPS. Jared’s teacher told him about Kody and the accomplishments he had been having at TPS.  Like many of the clients who are also in the program, hearing about Kody's success, prompted Jared and his family to get started. Since beginning, Jared has built strong relationships with many of the other clients and the excellent trainers at TPS.  Jared and his family are truly grateful for the opportunity to go to TPS.  His mother states:  "I want to thank the Be Perfect Foundation for helping my son and his recovery and to see once again a great smile on his face.”

For many of us during this holiday season, one of the things that we take for granted is to be able to stand tall for a holiday photo with our family. Could you imagine being the age of 13 and one of your only wishes and goals during the holiday season would be to stand tall and to have your knees straight? For Jared, that is what he says is his wish for the holiday season and one of his short-term goals.

But, do not let any of this lead you to believe that this was Jared’s only goal.  Now able to stand and take small steps in his walker, Jared has set his mind to something even greater—running again and to walk on and off the stage at his middle school graduation next year. These are lofty goals, but as Jared would tell you, TPS provides him the motivation he needs to keep on working. Jared notes that the family feel and positive environment give him the confidence to train hard to reach his goals.

How often do you make excuses to not take care of your body? How often do you say I will just get my workout in tomorrow? These are excuses that have never come out of the mouth of a 13-year-old. As all of his trainers have said, since the day that he started in the program, "the kid has never missed a day of therapy for anything."

So, while many of us during this holiday season have much that we can probably complain about, stories like these put everything back into perspective. What were you doing at the age of 13? What were your hopes and dreams? I can tell you this much:  at age 13, Jared Avalos is attacking his dreams as tenaciously as any 13-year-old I have ever met. As a Be Perfect sponsored client, Jared is holding up his end of the bargain and living every day with a purpose and with the mentality of trying to Be Perfect.  He works so hard to get the most out of his recovery. Jared, his mom, and his family would be the first to tell you that none of this would be possible without YOU and YOUR support. 

Jared is a reminder to all of us that while these injuries and ailments of paralysis can at many times have the end-all be-all goal, to be walking, sometimes just being able to be ourselves again is even more important...

Andy Marrero

The story of a man who CAN BRING A SMILE TO ANYONE

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His story...

Andy was injured in an unfortunate skateboard accident 10 years ago, which left him with a traumatic brain injury. Andy continues to smile each and every day that he wakes up. He is a constant light in people's day and always is able to bring a good laugh to the room anywhere that he goes.


In his own words:

Client Name: Andy Marrero

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Location: Claremont

Hometown: La Crescenta, CA

Injury or Diagnosis: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Typical The Perfect Step Schedule: Tuesday, Wednesday and Fridays

The Perfect Step Start Date: 09/21/2016

How did the client find out about The Perfect Step and Be Perfect?

Andy’s mom, Cathy, met Lorie Hargrave from Be Perfect Foundation at Casa Colina and was told about what the foundations is all about.

Is there anything the client would like to tell us about themselves BEFORE their accident/diagnosis?

Andy was a full time student at Cal State Los Angeles, his major was Kinesiology and he was in his 4th year. He also combined being a baseball player and having a part-time job.

Is there anything the client would like to tell us about themselves AFTER the accident/diagnosis?

His life revolves around his sessions at The Perfect Step. His work outs are number one for him. He still has a great sense of humor and enjoys the personal touch of all his specialists.” He is a very happy person “.

Why is The Perfect Step  important to the client? How has Be Perfect affected the client’s life and what would you want to say to the donors to thank them?

The Perfect Step has taken him to the next level. He has a lot more confidence in the things he can do. Be Perfect has given him the support that he needed to make progress. He wants to say to the donors “THANK YOU is people like you that make people like me be able to make improvements in our lives”.

What are the client’s current hobbies?

He likes to watch movies and enjoys video games.

What are the client’s short term goals and how is the help of Be Perfect and The Perfect Step playing a part in it?

His short term as well as his long term goal is: To gain more balance and improve his steps. The Perfect Step is where he has seen major changes since starting to come here. If it wasn’t for Be Perfect and its financial support these changes couldn’t happened.

Does the client have any personal motivations for recovery?

No personal motivations but, he is inspired by Hal Hargrave every time he sees him working out. He loves to be able to interact and have conversations with all his specialists.

What is the client’s biggest achievement since starting The Perfect Step?

His balance has improved tremendously therefore he has a lot more confidence.

YOU CAN HELP GIVE HOPE TO SOMEBODY LIKE ANDY!

John Morris

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Name: John Morris

Date of Injury: 7/7/12    

Level of Injury: Spinal cord injury (SCI) Thoracic spine 10 (vertebrate)

Brief description of how you are injured: I went to sit on my balcony railing around 8:00 am to read the paper and sat too far back on it and lost my balance and fell over. The fall was 3 stories up and landed on my back breaking my T-10 vertebrae.  

What type of assistance has Be Perfect Foundation provided for you and how has that helped regain an independent and active lifestyle? They have helped me in paying for some of my therapy, which helps me to continue improving my independent lifestyle as a 27 year old male.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? Well they re-instilled hope back in to my life by just being there to help. There has been plenty of times when people has said no we can’t help you. Be Perfect are the people that want to help and it’s nice to know that there is people like that still out there.

How has The Perfect Step helped you if applicable? It has made me loose weight which helps me move around easier as well as make me stronger to make my independent life easier. The atmosphere here is just like a close family which helps me out mentally because you don’t feel like an outsider. I love coming here!

What are some goals that you have set for yourself that you are proud to say that you have attained? Weight loss goal to under 200lbs. (at 193lbs. now). To be able to bench press 200lbs. I can do 210lbs. Just to get my cardio better, which it has.

What are some future goals that you would like to attain that Be Perfect can help you achieve? To just keep improving all around. Trying to be able to lock my knee out to start the walking process.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? Like to say, thank you to anyone that donates because you are helping to change a person’s life around and lifting their spirits back up which is an incredible thing.

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Brandon Rayburn

Name: Brandon Rayburn

Date of Injury: February 2nd, 2001

Level of Injury: Spinal Cord Injury (SCI), Cervical Spine 5 (vertebrate)

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Brief description of how you are injured: I was in a snowboarding accident going off a jump and broke my C-5 instantly.  I was flown to the hospital and had a halo put on for three months.

What type of assistance has Be Perfect Foundation provided for you and how has that helped regain an independent and active lifestyle? The Be Perfect Foundation supplied me with assistance to get back in to get help working out again.  I don’t have enough time to tell you all the things they provided me with.  I’m very grateful.

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How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? After so many "no’s" from insurance for assistance, it brings back hope that there are still good people in this world who truly want to help.

How has The Perfect Step helped you if applicable? The Perfect Step and their staff has helped me with confidence in my walking ability and just overall outlook on things. Flexibility, strength, balance and form.

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What are some goals that you have set for yourself that you are proud to say that you have attained? Goals that I have attained are more like being more independent, and walking long distances. I have attained goals of raising money for the foundation and paying it forward.

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What are some future goals that you would like to attain that Be Perfect can help you achieve? I would just really love to stay in the program because it’s practically is my second home.  I’d like to try to walk with a cane one day again.  I’d also like to help fundraise to pay it forward some more.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? To any donor, thank you very much. You have no idea how much myself and the others in the foundation appreciate it.  It’s such a hurtful feeling when insurance cuts you off and you can’t afford certain things, like a walker or wheelchair and even therapy.  But thanks to you, we can have the opportunity for those things.  So thank you from the bottom of my heart.

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Chris Seibel

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Name: Chris Seibel

Date of injury: 11-28-2009    

Level of injury: Spinal cord injury lumbar 1st Vertebrae 

Brief description of how you are injured: Sandbuggy accident in Dumont Sand Dunes.

What type of assistance has Be Perfect foundation provided for you and how has that helped regain an independent and active lifestyle? B.P. has provided weekly (exercise base therapy) which has helped me continue to regain what i lost after my accident.  Exercise is medicine, which gives me the wonderful life of independence.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? By showing and supporting my confidence in myself to live a normal life again. Also,  B.P. has given me the courage to share my story and encourage others that life continues.

How has The Perfect Step (TPS) helped you? TPS has given me a place to feel encouraged, comfortable and equipment to allow me to exercise tuned for S.C.I. victims.

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What are some goals that you have set for yourself that you are proud to say that you have attained? 1st was getting myself off forearm crutches to a cane. 2nd was going from a cane to no cane!  3rd was to ride my mountain bike to TPS from my house and back!  

What are some future goals that you would like to attain that Be Perfect can help you achieve? Building a fit body again & enabling me to ride further distances & rougher terrain on my mountain bike. Being more able to play out door sports with my son like a normal father would.

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What was life like prior to your accident and what were some of the fun activities that you enjoyed doing? Prior too life was good and exciting. I love doing these activities wake boarding, snow boarding, sky diving, bungee jumping. Driving a stick shift.

How has your accident changed your mindset? Truly it has humbled me and to enjoy every moment with my 11 yr. old son Gino. Most of all it has help me build my relationship deeper & stronger with Jesus Christ my lord and savior!  Also, to appreciate the little things life has to offer. Look past all the worldly noise and enjoy what god has created. Making me realize that i like us all have a purpose on earth!

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? I would like to speak for all us clients but here’s my sincere appreciation personally that without all your support and contributions we would not have this wonderful facility and program.  You all are a huge blessing to us who struggle daily with the simplest of things that the world doesn’t know or see. You the donors are changing lives in a huge and powerful way and god see ‘s how you continue to give us something for yourselves & families to others that you may not even know.  I thank you all with my heart! Peace be with you!  

Kareem Taylor

Thank you and your organization for providing me with this blissful gift. It was truly needed and I was nowhere near being able to do it on my own. So, on behalf of me and my family, we love to say thank you to the Be Perfect Foundation and thank you all for making this thing happen!
— Kareem Taylor
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Name: Kareem J Taylor

Date of Injury: 6/1997

Level of Injury: Cervical level 6th and 7th vertebrae

Brief description of how you are injured: Gunshot injury

What type of assistance has Be Perfect provided for you, and how has that helped you regain an independent and active lifestyle? Due to a lack of options and exhausted medicaid benefits I had a six plus year wheelchair that was causing me great discomfort. BE PERFECT granted me a custom wheelchair that is safe and durable.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? By giving me the ability to get out and mingle with the rest of the world.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself, that you are proud to say that you have attained? I have my Associates Degree, my sanity, my compassion my love & respect for humanity, these are my proudest treasures.

What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve? I plan to be a voice of my fellow brethren and sisters who cant be heard by others. BE PERFECT can help me to achieve this goal by helping me find a platform to market my ideas and solution for those of us with challenged lives.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT IT IS THE LOVE I NEEDED MOST RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!

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Earlasha Williams

Your contributions and goodwill has afforded me the opportunity to maximize my recovery and totally improve my overall welfare! I undoubtedly would not be able to explore this newfound journey, without your monetary support because the membership fees are simply astronomical.
— Earlasha Williams
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My name is Earlasha Williams. I was injured on May 2, 2000. My injury level is C1-C7 (Cervical Left) Incomplete. 

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Life threw me a curveball that literally knocked me flat on my back! It rocked me to the core of my very soul. Two short months after giving birth to my daughter, a massive tumor was discovered growing inside of my spinal cord. I underwent a nine hour surgery to have the tumor removed. The benign mass, an Ependymoma, was successfully detached in its entirety. However, it was entwined within my nerves. Therefore, my spine had to be severely manipulated in order to completely eradicate the growth. As a result of that procedure, I became an instant quadriplegic – paralyzed from the neck down – and fully dependent upon a respirator to help me breathe. 

By the grace of God and my tireless efforts, I have advanced from quadriplegic (paralyzed from the neck down) to hemiplegic (paralyzed/severe weakness on one side). I have regained: 

 The ability to breathe on my own 

 Bladder, bowel and moderate trunk control 

 Use of my right side and some use of my left side 

 The capability to rise up into a standing position - from my power wheelchair - with minimal assistance 

 Take several steps with my Rifton walker, in spite of the overpowering tone, hyperextension and spasticity in my left leg. (I am now able to independently step and/or drag my leg forward, before my caregiver has to advance it for me. My movement and rhythmatic pattern is slow and oftentimes looks robotic (lol), but I'm moving! 

Despite my advancements, I am still wheelchair bound and require the maximum assistance from my caregiver’s to perform all of the simple, basic functions of everyday living. The past 17 years have definitely been the most tumultuous times of my life! Outside of being a dedicated and dutiful mother, I have also been a SCI Advocate and a determined overcomer, throughout these challenging times. 

I have been a member of the UC Davis Medical Center’s SCI support group for the past 14 years. Additionally, I became a volunteer administrative assistant to the group facilitator as well as a certified peer counselor. Throughout the years, I have been responsible for performing various duties: administrative services, counseling and encouraging newly injured victims and their family members, aiding and assisting other survivors with interviewing and hiring new caregivers, locating and securing accessible housing, transportation, grants and accessing other local community resources for the disabled. I thoroughly enjoy all of my responsibilities, and I am very passionate about my work. Although my life has been forever changed, I truly believe that I was predestined to be at this place in my life right now. I have always been a humanitarian and a great support to those in need, but now I am an advocate as well! My tragedy has become a triumph because it has enabled me to be an inspiration and a living testimony to others. 

The Be Perfect Foundation awarded me a $2,500 scholarship to participate in an aggressive exercise-based therapy program at SCI – FIT. Their charity afforded me an opportunity to embark upon and explore a new path on my quest for healing. The last several years I have been doing aquatic therapy with my caregiver. The only person that has not abandoned or given up on me is God! He has been my biggest cheerleader until most recently. After joining SCI – FIT, I have gained a newfound support system and formed some new friendships. Being in a therapeutic environment is not only healthy, but it is also rewarding and stimulating as well. Likewise, breaking up the monotony of my regular therapy routine has been extremely beneficial to my recovery. I am pushing past my limitations and discovering my strengths. The Be Perfect Foundation's monetary assistance has helped me to make the otherwise impossible, achievable! 

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Sadly, the medical system is rigged! My insurance provider will only pay to keep me comfortable and wheelchair-bound. They are only willing to pay for basic, traditional physical therapy, which includes a yearly cap amount. Therefore, being able to attend SCI – FIT would have simply remained a dream, if it were not for the Be Perfect Foundation! They unquestionably restored my hope, through their actions and efforts to facilitate SCI survivors with the reaching their therapy goals. 

Since I have been attending SCI – FIT, I have gained some invaluable rehab knowledge and tips. I have learned about some aspects of the human anatomy and the specific muscle groups that I need to target and strengthen. In particular, I have discovered that my rectus femoris – it is a teardrop-shaped muscle that is attached to my kneecap – is severely weakened. It is the primary reason why the hyperextension in my left leg is so strong. More so, it is the culprit that is hindering me during my gait and ambulation training. Once I re-strengthen it, I will regain the ability to bend and straighten my knee with ease. This upturn will ultimately be a breaking point in my recovery process because I'll be able to initiate my steps with more ease and control. 

Some of the goals that I have set for myself are to tighten my core, strengthen my left side and be able to get down on my knees. I am proud to say that I have achieved these goals to a certain degree. I no longer need my daughter's full support to do sit ups, while my wheelchair backrest is at a 70° angled tilt. I've strengthen my abs to the point of being able to perform the motion by myself. I have lost 2 inches in my waistline, and my quad belly is not as extended as it used to be. I have regained some more strength in both of my left extremities - triceps and biceps in my arm; quad muscle in my thigh, hamstring muscle in my calf and dorsiflexion in my ankle. Also, I am now able to sit on my knees without being in severe pain for the first time in well over 10 years. I wasn't confident about attempting to assume the position, however my trainer at SCI-FIT encouraged and pushed me beyond my fears. In that very moment, I truly learned that my abilities far outweigh my disabilities! 

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My pressing future goals are to secure enough grant funds to continue attending SCI-FIT and find a part-time job that will allow me to telecommute from home. I altered my original desired schedule, in an effort to stretch out my current grant funds. Even still, my membership is at risk because once they are completely depleted, I will no longer be able to participate in the program. Also, I am in desperate need to secure a part-time job to help supplement my income. Living on a reduced, fixed monthly income is extremely challenging. Especially, for a disabled single mother. All of my volunteer efforts are noble, however they do not pay any of my bills. When my daughter goes off to college shortly, my nighttime care will fall solely on my elderly mother. My daytime caregiver consumes all of my state hours, helping me to meet all of my major needs throughout the day. The only way that I can pay for a nighttime caregiver is out of my own pocket, which means I need to earn some extra income to help pay for those services. Some of my future goals are to: 

 Learn how to walk again. 

 Further my higher education to achieve a Masters Degree in Human Services in Social Work to counsel and advocate for SCI Survivors. 

 Start my own nonprofit organization to provide quality-of-life grants to SCI survivors for a host of various needs. 

Sponsors, I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank you for your generous donations that you have made to the Be Perfect Foundation . Your blessings provided me with a grant to attend SCI-Fit. Your contributions and goodwill has afforded me the opportunity to maximize my recovery and totally improve my overall welfare! I undoubtedly would not be able to explore this newfound journey, without your monetary support because the membership fees are simply astronomical. Living with challenges and limitations are an everyday part of a spinal cord injury survivor's life. Obviously, the most devastating impact is the loss of mobility. However, simply struggling to survive on a limited monthly income is equally difficult. Endeavoring to pay for the sizable, out-of-pocket membership fees myself would have definitely been an impossible mission. I unquestionably would not have received a favorable outcome in the situation, if it were not for the aid and benefits that I received from the Be Perfect Foundation. Thank you for filling in the gap, where my insurance coverage has lapsed. I am humbled and extremely grateful that you chose their foundation to bless because you could've easily chosen another one. In closing, your offerings are truly a refuge and catalyst for helping to improve the quality of life for disabled individuals. Once more, thank you very much for your benevolence, efforts and assistance. 

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Iris Barajas

I am very grateful to all of you, thanks to you me and many other people that were helped by The Be Perfect Foundation are able to continue with our recovery.
— Iris Barajas
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Name: Iris Barajas

Date of Injury: 11/4/2016    

Level of Injury: T9-L1  

Brief description of how you are injured: I felt from a third floor fracturing my spinal cord.

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What type of assistance has Be Perfect Foundation provided for you and how has that helped regain an independent and active lifestyle? The Be Perfect Foundation has given me a scholarship to be part of The Perfect Step, where every day in every session I work on the recovery of my damage muscles due to my injury. Without the Be Perfect Foundation help I wouldn’t be able to afford this training program that I’m hoping it’ll help me to walk without the braces. I know is a long road but thanks to B.P.F. I know every day I’m closer to reaching my goal.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? After the doctors told me that I would never move my legs again, B.P.F. community, the trainers and client’s testimonials have made me believe in my self and what I can do. As long as I’m persistent and do my best during my sessions on top being self motivated I know I can continue on my way to recovery.

How has The Perfect Step helped you? The methods that are use in this facility are for our specific needs, and the facility is very well equipped. I love the kindness of all the staff here and how professional they are.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself that you are proud to say that you have attained? I don’t use the wheelchair anymore. I use the braces and the walker even to walk long distances.

What are some goals for the future that you would like to attain that Be Perfect can help you achieve? I would like to recover the movement and the strength on my legs and stop using the braces so that I can be independent and go back to school.

What was life like prior to your accident and what were some of the fun activities that you enjoyed doing? I use to like traveling and going to the university. How has your accident changed your mindset? I valued everything in life now, especially health and the things that matter the most like family and friends.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? THANK YOU to all the donors for the amazing help, for giving me hope and for the opportunity to put me in a wonderful program that, I wouldn’t be able to do without your help. I am very grateful to all of you, thanks to you me and many other people that were helped by B.P.F. are able to continue with our recovery.

Elizabeth Ibarra

I truly appreciate the help from everyone, Thank you all for making it possible for me to work on reaching my goal!.
— Elizabeth Ibarra
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1. Name: Elizabeth Ibarra

2. Date of Injury:  2/12/2011

3. Level of Injury: Ripped ligaments on C1-C2, fluid decompression on T5-T8, scar tissue on lumbar.

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4. Brief description of how you are injured: I was in a motor vehicle against pedestrian accident. Resulting in an incomplete spinal cord injury and a knee disarticulation amputation. We had gotten a flat tire driving on the freeway and we pulled aside to the shoulder to get help. While changing the tire a man driving a pick-up truck was having a diabetic attack and lost control, crashing into the car of the person that was helping us change the tire and which I was also standing beside. The car dropped me and ran over my legs with the front tires and the back tires ended partially on my hip resulting in a pelvis fracture. I was rushed to the hospital, when my parents arrived they were told they didn’t know if I was going to make it because I had lost a lot of blood and all the trauma. Due to all the damage on my legs I had to have wound care cleanings done every other day and had an artery transplant from one leg to the other. My parents were told if the pulse on my leg was good after 3 days from the procedure they would be able to save both legs. But because of hospital negligence the doctors skipped my leg cleanings for 5 days or more, which they were doing every other day. Due to the them skipping the cleanings of my legs one of my legs got infected, my parents were told it was either my leg or my life. Since I was in the hospital I had severe back pain and had to be taking pain medication to help with that. A year after my accident I had an MRI done discovering I had fluid compressing against my spinal cord and had surgery for that.

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6.  How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again?

I’ve heard of individuals that have improved or have been able to attain some of their goals they have set for themselves with going to The Perfect Step. The Perfect Step is more focused on spinal cord rehabilitation than physical therapy. Knowing that this facility works with trying to reactivate the nerves/muscles that have been damaged gives me hope in attaining my goals. With the help from Be Perfect I will be able to attend The Perfect Step more frequently as I would like and attain my goal.

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7.  How has The Perfect Step helped you? 

It has re-instilled confidence in my ability to walk again. Through The Perfect Step i have learned exercises that will be helpful to regain the strength that i need to accomplish my goals. 

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9.  What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve?  My goal I would like to attain is to walk without the need of any assistance. I would like to be independent and for my life to be more of what it was and of how I visualized it would’ve been before this traumatic life changing event. I am looking into returning to school and pursuing a career in the medical field.

10.  Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them? I truly appreciate the help from everyone, Thank you all for making it possible for me to work on reaching my goal!

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Christian Barragan

I will always be grateful to the Be Perfect donors and I am a living testimony of how great the foundation is!
— Christian Barragan
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Name: Christian Barragan

Date of Injury: 8/10/15

Level of Injury: C1-C7

Brief description of how you are injured or the type of illness:

I was enjoying a day at the beach with my girlfriend when I decided to take a plunge in the ocean. I did not realize that I was diving into a shallow area.

What type of assistance has Be Perfect Foundation provided for you and how has that helped regain an independent and active lifestyle?

The Be Perfect Foundation has helped me in many ways. They gave me a scholarship and now I’m able to stay in The Perfect Step program longer. I was in need of different medical supplies and they provided me with plenty of that too.

How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again?

I come from a country where help for people in my situation is very rare. When I found out that I was getting a scholarship, my family and I cried because we couldn’t believe that B.P. didn’t even know us and they were helping me. I knew then that they're people who truly care.

How has The Perfect Step helped you, if applicable?

Coming to train here has become my priority and I want to do my best every time I’m here. The trainers encourage me mentally and physically and also give me the tools to do things on my own.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself that you are proud

to say that you have attained?

I have more control of movement when using my arms, stronger cord, as well as stronger legs. I am very motivated and grateful every day.

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What are some goals for the future that you would like to attain that Be Perfect can help you achieve?

I would like to be completely independent, able to walk and work. I would like to one day be able to have my own family with children. I would also like to be an inspiration for others and share my story, my struggles but also let them know about how the help from B.P. made a huge difference in my life.

What was life like prior to your accident/illness and what were some of the fun activities that you enjoyed doing?

Before the accident I was a very active football player. I enjoyed going to the gym and stay in shape. I was able to obtain a football scholarship and attend culinary school. I graduated with honors and had a job at a local restaurant.

How has your accident/illness changed your mindset?

I value all aspects of life now, like family, my spiritual and mental strength as well.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?

I will always be grateful to the Be Perfect donors and I am a living testimony of how great the foundation is. I’ll tell my story to anyone who is in need of a great exercise program like TPS.

Jose Castro

“I would like to take the time to sincerely express how thankful I am to everyone who has extended any sort of support for me. Thank you to all the people who have donated to Be Perfect. Because of you I am able to work towards beating paralysis. The donation isn’t just for a great cause; it’s changing lives like mine. “
— Jose Castro
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Name : Jose Castro

Date of Injury : My accident occurred on March 1, 2014.

Level of Injury : I suffered a C2 fracture, I have my vertebrae fused from C1-C4, and am an incomplete quadriplegic on a ventilator.

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Brief description of how you are injured: The accident was the result of a jeep run incident, which occurred when the Jeep climbed a hill and came upon a steep precipice. The edge was deceiving and by the time we realized it was not a continuation of the road, we fell over the 20 ft. edge. I was given CPR until medical help was able to arrive and was then pronounced dead in the helicopter, while on our way to the hospital. They were able to revive me. Once I was aware of my situation, doctor’s depicted a very harsh reality, as they told me I was paralyzed and I wouldn’t be able to move or be able to sustain my neck, nor breathe on my own. As of today, I have surpassed many of the limitations they predicted for me, as I can sustain my neck and can breathe on my own for 40 minutes.

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What type of assistance has Be Perfect provided for you, and how has that helped you regain an independent and active lifestyle? :
Be Perfect is a charitable organization that has provided me with financial assistance during stressful and taxing times in my family’s life. They have helped pay for my therapy and by doing so, they have offered me the opportunity to benefit from attending more days out of the week. They have re-instilled hope in my life by giving me an opportunity to do what I love to do. Working out and exercising my body has been a life-long passion, which had been ripped from my life. Now, the organization has allowed me the chance to actively work towards my goals.

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How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again? :

Seeing results has inspired me to continue pushing to achieve more goals.

How has The Perfect Step helped you (if applicable) : Be Perfect has given me the financial means to participate in a very meaningful program to me,The Perfect Step. The Perfect Step has helped me in ways that go far beyond their job description. They mean so much to me, because they were the only place that was willing take a chance on me. Sometimes, all a person needs to get back on their own two feet (both figuratively and literally) is for someone to take a chance on them. They gave me hope and have been worth all the sacrifices my family and I have gone through to attend therapy sessions. While other programs refused to look at my case and wrote my destiny before they had a chance get to know what I was capable of, The Perfect Step embraced and believed in my journey. This program has given me something to look forward to every day. It is my sanctuary, because the trainers have created an environment that allows me to believe in myself, especially on days when I start to lose the courage to do so. They are relentless engines that remind me of my strength and among everything I’ve lost, they’ve never allowed me to lose my faith in myself and that is invaluable to me. I attend four days out of the week and travel two hours to and from the facility.

What are some goals that you have set for yourself, that you are proud to say that you have achieve?

For three years the trainers at TPS have wanted to work towards my goals as actively and passionately as I do. Because of them, I have regained the ability to stabilize and sustain my neck on my own. I have regained limited arm and leg movement and I can initiate arm movement. I can also curl 5lbs on each arm, and ride the spin bike with limited assistance. All these goals are blessings and monumental feats the doctors never expected me to surpass. On days that I cannot attend, it feels as though I am not actively working towards my goals and my day is incomplete. Attending these sessions has become therapeutic for me, both physically and emotionally.

What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve?

Some of my new goals are being able to breath on my own indefinitely and not have to rely on the vent. Therapy is helping me work towards that goal, because they have helped strengthen my diaphragm. I would also like to gain more independence, like being able to maneuver my chair by myself and eventually be able to walk again.

Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?

I would like to take the time to sincerely express how thankful I am to everyone who has extended any sort of support for me. Thank you to all the people who have donated to Be Perfect. Because of you I am able to work towards beating paralysis. The donation isn’t just for a great cause; it’s changing lives like mine. Thank you for taking the time to read my story.

Jon Keimach

Be Perfect has re-instilled hope back into my life again by helping me with funding to go to The Perfect Step to get outpatient therapy. This is put my body into much better condition. For years I was getting tighter and more spastic and this type of therapy is the most relief I can get other than medication.
— Jon Keimach
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1. Name: Jon Keimach Jr.

2. Date of Injury: August 1st, 2001

3. Level of Injury: C5/C6

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4.  Brief description of how you are injured:

I broke my neck after losing control of my motorcycle (dirt bike) and crashing into a tree in Lake Arrowhead, CA, at the age of 14.

5. What type of assistance has Be Perfect provided for you, and how has that helped you regain an independent and active lifestyle?

Be Perfect has provided me financial assistance towards physical therapy and a new wheelchair. This has helped me regain an independent and active lifestyle by giving me access to this type of therapy and giving me more independence with a custom wheelchair that I can push.

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6.  How has Be Perfect re-instilled hope back into your life again?

Be Perfect has re-instilled hope back into my life again by helping me with funding to go to The Perfect Step to get outpatient therapy. This has put my body into much better condition. For years I was getting tighter and more spastic and this type of therapy is the most relief I can get other than medication.

7.  How has The Perfect Step helped you (if applicable)?

The Perfect Step helped me gain confidence and independence by helping me push towards and obtain my goals. Nowhere else can I get the best trained specialists, top of the line equipment, and a great community of support.

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8. What are some goals that you have set for yourself, that you are proud to say that you have attained?

Some goals I have attained that I am proud of are losing about 25 lbs and getting strong enough to push my new manual wheelchair everyday and put away my power wheelchair. Every session I leave with immediate relief from tone/spasms.

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9.  What are some future goals that you would like to attain, that Be Perfect can help you achieve?

Some goals that I would like to attain are less tone/spasms, straightening my spine curvature/hunch, and improve on my abilities/strength.

10.  Anything else that you would like to tell the donors or a simple thank you that you would like to give them?

Thank you very much for your help it really means a lot to me!

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Oswaldo Ramirez

Be Perfect has provided me with the ability to get stronger as well and has also given me the confidence to soon start driving.
— Oswaldo Ramirez
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My name is Oswaldo Ramirez and I was injured on December, 10, 2016. I sustained a T5-T6 spinal cord injury in my car accident.

Due to physical therapy at The Perfect Step funded by Be Perfect I'm now having less nerve pain and spasms. As a result I am no longer taking nerve pain medication

Be Perfect has given me hope that there’s still life after spinal cord injury

The way Be Perfect has helped me is by giving me the opportunity to continue to work on my dream to walk one day

Some of my achievements that I have achieved at Be Perfect is standing with minor assistance and a stronger core which makes it easier to do day to day things

Be Perfect has provided me with the ability to get stronger as well and has also given me the confidence to soon start driving

I would really like to thank the donors for helping me on my fight against paralysis.

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Raul Garcia

I would like to say that my family and I are extremely grateful for the contributions of the BP donors. I would not be able to be here without them. I currently do not have the financial means to be at this The Perfect Step, and the donors have provided me with a huge blessing. I will take full advantage of every minute I spend at Perfect Step.
— Raul Garcia
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My name is Raul Garcia and I am a C7/ T1 Spinal Cord Injury. I was a victim of a gun shot on February 1st, 2017.

I have not been in The Perfect Step the program long, but the few therapies I have had have been very aggressive and I really like them. I feel like I am getting sore in areas, where I had not been sore in over one year. The therapies, advice from the physical therapies, and the employees at the front desk have given me tremendous hope for my future and my recovery.

Seeing other people in my condition and seeing them regaining their life styles is very motivating. I am hopeful to be completely independent again.

Coming into the program, I had goals of wanting to be able to transfer from my bed to my chair without assistance, and I have done that several times now.

My long-term goals from being in the program reside in, losing weight in my midsection to make daily activities easier and seeking any type of employment.

I would like to say that my family and I are extremely grateful for the contributions of the BP donors. I would not be able to be here without them. I currently do not have the financial means to be at this The Perfect Step, and the donors have provided me with a huge blessing. I will take full advantage of every minute I spend at Perfect Step.

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Oscar Dighero

I would like to thank the foundation for giving me this opportunity to do this amazing therapy program and the scholarship. I would not have been able to do this without your help and support.
— Oscar Dighero
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A little bit about me;  My name is Oscar Dighero and I would like to thank you for your kindness in offering me a scholarship to The Perfect Step.  Please see below for a little bit of my story:

1.  Oscar Dighero

2.  December 13th, 2013

3.  Totally paralyzed from the nose down initially. 

4.  I received a flu shot late November of 2013.  Within 10 days, I was at the hospital as I could no longer stand or hold myself up.  I was diagnosed with a rare condition called, Guillain-Barre Syndrome which shuts down all you nerves and muscles.  I went from a very physical job working 6 days a week, 12 hours a day to being paralyzed, then to on life support and a trache & feeding tube.  I was in a sub-acute nursing home for 4 years and have finally come home 5 months ago,

5.  I was able to use the robotic waking machine and that is the first time i have been able to take steps.  It was amazing.

6.  Be Perfect has shown me that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough.

7  The Perfect Step has shown me that with sheer will power an drive, I can move more than I used to and has given me back my hope of walking again.

8.  After being in a nursing home for 4 years, I am finally home with my family.  I have also found an awesome PT.

9.  I want to strengthen my muscles and eventually stand and walk.

10.  I would like to thank the foundation for giving me this opportunity to do this amazing therapy program and the scholarship.  I would not have been able to do this without your help and support.

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Please see attached videos of what the Perfect Step has helped me do in just a few weeks

Again thank you so much for helping to get some of my old life back.

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