V2 Content, in association with Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, is producing a documentary about rehabilitation from severe brain injuries, which will premiere in Lincoln, Nebraska on October 13, 2009 at the Madonna GOAL Awards Banquet.
Producers Brandon & Tiffany Verzal have documented their two-year-old daughter Alexis since April 3, 2008, after she suffered a traumatic brain injury, from what authorities believe was shaken baby syndrome. Alexis was injured while at a daycare in College Station, Texas. Alexis was 14-months-old when she was injured, and was a normal functioning and healthy child. The swelling and bleeding in her brain caused permanent and severe brain damage. After 22 days in a Texas hospital, she was transferred to Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Lincoln, Nebraska, where she has been undergoing intensive therapy since April 28, 2008. Alexis is still recovering physically and cognitively to this day.
In February, V2 Content and Madonna joined forces to tell the story of rehabilitation after suffering a brain injury. In addition to following Alexis’ progress, three other patients are being documented as well.
Derek Ruth is a 13-year old who suffered a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) in September of 2008 while playing in a youth football game. Derek underwent emergency surgery and both sides of his skull were removed to let his brain swell without pressuring against his skull. “D” is a tremendous athlete and an excellent student. He attacks each day of therapy as he would a sports competition. What Derek has accomplished is less than a year of recovery is truly a miracle. In May, he was able to walk the last few blocks of the Lincoln Marathon, and he is still going to therapy full-time, five days a week. He will be featured in a nationally published Parade Magazine article in the second week of July.
Amanda Kay, 17, from Kansas City, Missouri, spent nearly thirty minutes under freezing cold water in January 2009 after her car veered off the interstate. When the rescue team pulled “Mandy” out, they saw a flicker in her eye, and they were miraculously able to revive her. Without oxygen flowing to her brain, anoxic brain damage occurred. Mandy arrived at Madonna in February on a ventilator, and by April she was walking with assistance. She spent time at an assisted living facility, and has now returned home to Kansas City.
Christian Stokes is 28-years-old. An Iraq war veteran, he was injured in a motorcycle accident in Kansas City, Missouri in April of 2009. After fifteen days in a coma, he was transferred to Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital. Christian has had a remarkably fast recovery. On April 30, he was unable to walk, but by June he had been completely cleared by his physical therapists. He continues therapy to improve his cognitive skills, but will return home on July 3.
Viewers will be taken into the depths of brain injury and the approach of recovery through rehabilitation. The documentary will include comments from family members, therapists, neurosurgeons, and doctors, and will also feature two nationally recognized brain injury advocates.
Lee Woodruff is the wife of ABC News Anchor Bob Woodruff, who suffered a TBI while working in Iraq in 2006. The author of the New York Times Best Seller In An Instant and Perfectly Imperfect, Lee is the founder of the Bob Woodruff Foundation and Remind.org, and speaks across the nation about brain injuries and wounded veterans.
Trisha Meili is known to the world as “The Central Park Jogger”. After surviving a brutal attack in 1989, she has spent 20 years living with a TBI, and gives viewers insight as to what it is like to live as a highly functional brain injury survivor. Trisha is the author of the New York Times best seller I am the Central Park Jogger: A Story of Hope and Possibility.
Find out more about the documentary:
Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital – www.madonna.org
V2 Content – www.v2content.com
http://www.kbtx.com/home/headlines/22016329.html (you can see arrest statement on this page)
http://www.ketv.com/news/18727868/detail.html (video on the side)
http://www.ketv.com/news/19363175/detail.html?taf=oma (video on the side)