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On July 8, 2009, Michael DeStefano was involved in a serious car accident that left him with a traumatic brain injury. His life would never be the same after that accident, but he remains positive and is attempting to encourage others with his story.

Mike was born and raised in the western suburbs of Chicago. He was just a college student at Illinois State University when he was involved in a serious roll-over auto accident. He was riding home from work with a friend when the accident happened. Going 55 mph, the car ended up rolling over three times and left Mike clinging to life. It took about 45 minutes for the rescuers to cut Mike out of the car.

After 11 months, in four hospitals and two rehab facilities, Mike finally came home, but he has a long road ahead of him. Mike said it has been his strong family and a few close friends that have helped him during his recovery. They never gave up on him and that helped Mike never give up. Mike and his family don’t even take baby steps in the recovery, the steps are smaller than that. It is trying and taxing on them. All efforts are spent trying to help Mike recovery even a little bit more.

They focus on each little event as it comes and Mike tries to use humor to deal with his challenges. Mike’s positive attitude has been an inspiration to his family, but also to the nurses that took care of him and countless others who witness his will to go on with life and keep moving forward. Despite the challenges faced by Michael and his family, they have taken it upon themselves to educate others about traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and help others understand the challenges faced by victims of TBI.

The Michael A. DeStefano Foundation was founded in 2009 to provide advocacy and assistance to families whose loved ones have suffered from traumatic brain injuries. With his mother by his side, they go around speaking about people with traumatic brain injuries (TBI).  It helps a bit with their own healing and it is good for Mike to get out in front of others. For more information, visit: www.michaeladestefanofoundation.org

Below is a video of Michael and his mom speaking to speech therapists about TBI. The video is a bit long, but it really shows you the challenges faced by people like Mike and his family. It also shows their incredible perseverence. 

Kirsten Olson
2/3/2013 12:21:25 pm

I am so impressed by Mike and his family. As his former teacher/NHS sponsor, those small steps mentioned by his mom are more impressive than words can say.

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9/5/2013 03:17:03 pm

It would have been too painful for Michael and his family to overcome the hard situations with traumatic brain injury. Thank God, he recovered and we could see him smiling.

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Gina forcucci
10/26/2013 06:09:33 pm

This is gods work, mike is Gods gift, and mike will open his package his giftbsoon, and all his goals, missions and dreams will prevail!
He is a spectacular man!

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11/28/2015 08:56:28 am

He was riding home from work with a friend when the accident happened. Going 55 mph, the car ended up rolling over three times and left Mike clinging to life. It took about 45 minutes for the rescuers to cut Mike out of the car.

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11/30/2015 02:44:43 am

He was riding home from work with a friend when the accident happened. Going 55 mph, the car ended up rolling over three times and left Mike clinging to life. It took about 45 minutes for the rescuers to cut Mike out of the car.

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Lisa & Zoe
10/28/2016 09:48:27 am

Thank you for sharing! We met Michael at INPR. God bless Michael and your family.

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