I graduated in June of 2008 and with the support of my parents, I decided to take a year off so I could do whatever I wanted to do before facing the real world.
My life was as close to perfect as it could get; my BMX bike by my side, working at a bike shop, going to the beach, riding all over the place and hanging out with my good buddies. We took plenty of pictures and videotaped bike tricks…
Saturday, July 19th, 2008…I was doing just that, riding my bike and having fun with my friends. Suddenly, my life as I new it changed when a trick went terribly wrong. I landed on my neck and broke C1-C3 vertebrates. I have no feelings below my chest. I spent three months at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta fighting for my life. I came back home to celebrate my birthday with my family and friends and soon after that I was hospitalized again at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore for rehabilitation and extensive therapy.
Life is very hard but my friends and family keep me going. This injury has changed my soul. I appreciate life in ways that no one can imagine. I have regained partial use of my arms and continue working as hard as I can to maintain my body in optimum condition because I WILL Ride Again! Therapy and adaptive equipment are critical for my recovery but unfortunately these added expenses are enormous!
To help offset such expenses, my family and friends have come together to establish a fundraising campaign in my honor through the Catastrophic Injury Program of HelpHOPELive. For over 25 years, the non-profit HelpHOPELive has been working with the organ/tissue transplant community. In recent years, they have expanded their mission to assist those who have sustained a catastrophic injury. All contributions are administered by HelpHOPELive exclusively for injury-related expenses. Donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.
Thank you for reading my story and for your generosity! For more information, please contact HelpHOPELive at 800-642-8399.
Thanks for your support!
John & Maria Heavener (Parents)
Contributors to your campaign will appreciate knowing that your fundraising efforts are legal and that fiscal accountability is provided by a nonprofit organization. Financial statements are available from the State Division of Consumer Affairs, P.O. Box 1163, Richmond, VA 23218
March 9, 2011
Osbourn Park grad vows to ride again after stunt leaves him paralyzed
January 24, 2017
You'll ride again. Bless.
November 30, 2016
Ricky, don't ever give up! God bless you and grant that one day in the not too distant future, you'll ride again! God Bless!
November 30, 2016
You might not remember, I am a friend of your brothers and we met once at a get together in a glory days bar. It was brief, but your relaxed attitude and and vibe really impressed me. I did not know anything about your story, but this has helped me see your warrior spirit and I do believe that you will continue to strive to ride again! Keep it up man, many small victories at a time until you reach your ultimate goal.