Fundraiser for Samantha Ambrose

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2013 at 09:37 AM.

Dear Editor:

 

Samantha Ambrose is the typical home town girl. Born and raised in Port St. Joe, she had the opportunity to be an integral part of the 1998 Lady Sharks softball district champions. Samantha played the key position of catcher. She is best known for her beautiful smile and competitive spirit.

On November 15, 1998, Samantha’s life and the life of this who love her were forever changed. Samantha was involved in an automobile accident and suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

It was doubtful that Samantha would recover and if she did, she would never be the same vivacious, quick-witted individual we had known. With the prayers and support of her family and her community, Samantha not only survived her accident, but has gone on to far exceed everyone’s expectations. She astounded everyone with her will and determination by walking the stage with her graduating class and little help from her friends.

Fast forward 15 years later. As is true for most TBI survivors, the outward manifestation of her accident is almost nonexistent; however, the day-to-day struggle of integrating into life is constant. TBI survivors suffer with multiple symptoms. Memory loss, debilitating headaches, personality changes, inability to control inhibitions/anger, lack of social skills, not to mention any physical disability that may go along with the initial injury.

The CDC reports that every year, at least 1.7 million TBIs occur in the United States. TBI is a contributing factor to 30.5 percent of all injury-related deaths in the United States and about 75 percent of the TBIs that occur each year are concussion or other forms of mild TBI that studies are not linking to Alzheimer’s and/or dementia in later years.



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