Traumatic brain injury leaves snowboarder with new mountains to tackle
February 14th, 2012
08:15 AM ET

Traumatic brain injury leaves snowboarder with new mountains to tackle

Editor's Note: Each week in The Human Factor, we bring you the story of someone who has overcome tremendous obstacles to achieve a goal.  Today we introduce you to Kevin Pearce, a professional snowboarder who was considered Olympic gold medalist Shaun White's biggest competitor. Then an accident on the Eagle Superpipe in Park City, Utah, left Pearce clinging to his life.

As soon as I awoke from the coma that was a result of my severe traumatic brain injury, I knew my goal was to get back on my snowboard.

Luckily for me, my doctor had told my parents that my recovery depended on keeping my hopes and dreams alive. So, even though I’m sure they were nervous to think I would ever go snowboarding again, they supported me and allowed me to believe this might someday be possible.

For me, the idea of getting back to the mountains, to the snow, to my friends, crew and my favorite sport gave me all the direction I needed to make my recovery a reality.

But first, I had an enormous mountain to climb, and it was nothing like the mountains where I had spent the best part of my competitive snowboarding career.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.