High Fives Welcomes 7 New Athletes

Welcome to the Community!

This summer, the High Fives Foundation welcomed 7 new individuals. We are proud to support these athletes throughout their recovery. Meet the athletes below!

Shannon VanDerwerken | Silverthorne, CO

Shannon came up short on a big air jump in a competition in March of 2017. The impact broke her tib/fib, tore her patella tendon, medial meniscus, lateral meniscus and ACL.7 She also broke L1 in her back.

Shannon’s short term goals are to regain full range of motion, while her long term goals are to regain the ability to ski/compete and coach skiing again.

The High Fives Foundation granted Shannon funds to cover a months rent while she continues to train to reach her professional skiing goals. 

High Fives, to me, means a fresh start and an amazing way to connect and help people in the future.

Shannon is excited be a part of the High Fives Family and meet other Athletes in the future.

Kyle Bashour | San Francisco, CA

Kyle has been a lifelong skier, but only recently started getting more comfortable hitting jumps. While skiing at Squaw Valley on the morning of April 11, 2019, he underestimated the size of a jump and ended up hitting one well outside of skill level. He got way too much air, overshot the landing, and fell 20-30ft onto hard spring snow, resulting in several injuries: a fractured right heel, a broken left femur, burst fractures of his L5 and L3 vertebrae, compression fractures of his L2 and L1 vertebrae, three fractured ribs, a fractured sternum, and a broken left thumb. The spinal damage resulted in nerve damage to his left leg, but it has been diagnosed as temporary.

Through a June 2019 High Fives Foundation grant, Kyle has been granted a YMCA pool and exercise bike membership, acupuncture, personal training and massage therapy sessions; all of which will will help Kyle in his recovery. All therapies will take place in the San Francisco, CA region so that Kyle will be close to home while he heals.

These therapies will help me recover faster by paying for rehabilitation and personal training beyond my standard physical therapy. I'll be able to get back to cycling faster, and hopefully get back to skiing for the 19/20 season!

said #HighFivesAthlete Kyle Bashour

Allison White | Golden, CO

High Fives recognizes that having a disability is not something that should keep you from adventures, sports, and pushing yourself to do new things.

said #HighFivesAthlete Allison White

Just after Christmas 2016, Allison injured her knee skiing (injury to ACL, Hoffa’s fat pad, unknown other structures). For most people, her injury would have ended their season. For Allison, that was the beginning of a life-changing journey. She was diagnosed about one month later with a condition called CRPS, or complex regional pain syndrome, a condition that directly resulted from the injury. CRPS is a rare disease, affecting only about 200,000 people total in the United States. When she was injured, her nervous system had its wires crossed, and they stayed that way. Allison experiences constant pain in her right foot, but it hasn’t stopped her from learning how to rock climb. She’s excited to continue pursuing new goals outside.

The High Fives Foundation will cover travel associated costs for a Para-Climbing event -or- costs that will help her in her climbing endeavors. The grant provided will help Allison continue to compete in elite-level competitions, and the organization is excited to assist her in the future.

Tyler Wano | Littleton, CO

It was a beautiful sunny day at Breckenridge ski resort. Tyler was practicing going off some of the larger jumps in the terrain park. As his day was starting to wrap up, he was feeling pretty confident with his abilities, so he decided to attempt a slightly bigger jump. As he began his ASCENT in the air he started to get flat as if he was laying down. It was at that moment he knew that things were not going to end well. Tyler landed flat on his back right on the apex of the knuckle shattering his T8 vertebrae. He also broke a rib and his sternum.

Fitting the High Fives Foundation’s mold to a tee, the organization was excited that Tyler reached out following his injury. Tyler was grateful that he did as well.

High fives means a great deal to me. Prior to my accident, and even after, my favorite thing to do was walk around a live event handing out high fives. The smile it would bring to peoples faces was priceless.

gleamed Tyler Wano

Tyler will have many new opportunities to pass out high fives in the future, as the organization is covering 3-Months of rent while he trains hard and works toward his recovery and recreational goals.

David Sagal | Calgary, Canada

While skiing inbounds (at sunshine ski resort) David wiped out falling out of bounds. While attempting to return inbounds a level 2 avalanche occurred sweeping David over a 100 foot cliff and suffered a burst fracture to his T-12 vertebrae, which has left him a complete paraplegic from his waist down. David was classified as a T7 Asia A upon discharge in May.

David is still very early in his recovery from a traumatic injury and in June 2019, the High Fives Foundation was honored to provide him with a CrossFit membership and chiropractic sessions to pair with the time that he spends in the gym.

David’s goals exist not only in recovery, but in sports as well.

I want to complete a 3k swim, as well as get back into the water and attempt adaptive surfing. On top of those goals I want to train to become a Para-athlete with team Canada and hope to qualify for Japan in 2020 for rowing or kayaking. These two sports will pair well with adaptive surfing.

said David Sagal

While David has competitive adaptive sports goals, he has one difficult yet surmountable goal that he’s set his eyes on.

“My ultimate goal still hasn’t changed from pre-injury in that I want to big wave surf.”

Jordan Anderson | Englewood, CO

I am very focused on starting my career as a nurse, I graduated nursing school two months prior to my injury and I am very ready to get that going, I also really miss being on the trails on my mountain bike, so as soon as that's an achievable situation I will be out there multiple times per week.

said Jordan proudly

Jordan fractured his T4 and 5 vertebrae and contused his spinal cord. He was racing in the first ever Coeur d’Alene enduro bike race, a two-day event. Day one went well, and the morning of day two Jordan wanted to make sure that he practiced the finish line jump so that he wouldn’t do it blind in the race. Jordan rolled it once the night before, but that morning he carried far too much speed and went well past the landing, thankfully he tucked his head before impact. Jordan was knocked out, and knew his life would be taking a dramatic and frightening detour from the previous plan.

Jordan, since has poured every ounce of his energy into his recovery, but still very much has his eyes on career goals.

In the June 2019 grant cycle, High Fives Foundation provided Jordan with personal training sessions at Craig Hospital’s PEAK Center. He is well on his way to achieving his personal feats.

Justin Lowery | Quincy, MA

High Fives means a number of things to me. It means the opportunity to continue to progress toward my goal of living a healthy life, and the opportunity to attain the goals I set for myself long ago.

said Justin Lowery

On July 06, 2008, Justin was celebrating the Fourth of July weekend with his friends on the Salmon River in Riggins, Idaho after graduating college from the University of Idaho. After an epic weekend filled with white water rapids, dancing, and meeting wonderful people, he was packed and ready to start work at his dream job at a local hospital in Moscow, Idaho. The next instant, he woke up in a hospital with a tracheotomy and was told he had broken his neck in a diving accident about a month earlier.

Justin had a temporary setback with his injury, but he is honored to become a part of the High Fives Family.

Justin received a June 2019 High Fives grant to be used toward an electric power assist for his manual wheelchair along with personal training sessions at Journey Forward in Canton, Massachusetts.

Justin not only plans to work hard to put his injury in the rearview mirror, he also plans to pay it forward and coach others who have experienced new life-altering injuries.

My experience with High Fives gives me the potential to continue to push myself and to be an example to others down the line.

Justin Lowery

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