KAMLOOPS — A horrific car crash in December 2015 completely changed the lives of Kyle Bourrie and his family.
Kyle suffered a traumatic brain injury, losing much of his mobility, and his ability to talk.
The 22-year-old is now being cared for at Ponderosa Lodge, and a fundraiser has been set up to pay for the equipment and therapy required to give Kyle the best chance to walk and talk again.
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For now, small movements are providing Kyle's family and friends with great hope for the future.
"There were many times when we didn't know if Kyle would survive, or his body would be able to continue on, but he proved us wrong every single time," family friend Tamara Duncan said.
On Dec. 23, 2015, Kyle was behind the wheel of his car when he crashed while on the way to work.
As a result, Kyle suffered a traumatic brain injury. He spent 13 months in hospital, eight of which he was in a coma. Kyle is still unable to walk or talk.
"A few months ago he got a shunt put into his brain to help to relieve the fluid and right away we saw huge improvements, smiles, interaction," Duncan said. "He tries, you can tell he tries to talk, he's moving his tongue when you're talking to him. If not, we get the blinks, we get the thumbs up."
Kyle has a strong relationship with his father, Shawn, who spends countless hours encouraging Kyle in his recovery.
"It's pretty obvious how much he loves his son, and he wants to just give him his life back," Duncan said. "He can't, so we have to give him every opportunity to help him."
Duncan has set up a Go-Fund-Me page to raise $100,000 for the purchase of a motorized wheelchair, a specialized van with a lift, and the occupational and physiotherapy needed to improve Kyle's quality of life.
"Time is of the essence, right?" Duncan said. "We don't want him to just lay there. I don't want him to just sit in his Broda chair in front of a T.V. hoping somebody will come and sit with him.
"That's not a life. Take him out, let's go for a walk, there's so much beauty out there."
There is also beauty in the interactions Kyle is able to have with his loved ones, showing signs that he is still the determined young man he has always been.
"Each time he came up against an obstacle where he could have chosen life or death, he kept choosing to fight. And you see that resilience in him every single day."
In addition to the Go-Fund-Me page, Duncan is selling tickets to a fundraising dinner and silent auction at On the Rocks Pub on June 11th.
Tickets can be purchased by contacting Tamara Duncan at 250-819-9300 or at Robertson Manufacturing Ltd. on Athabaska St.
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