Clio family celebrates miracle recovery from crash, ending with a college degree

Published: Apr. 28, 2021 at 7:21 PM EDT
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CLIO, Mich. (WJRT) - College graduation this spring is extra special for a Clio family.

At one point, they wondered if graduating from college would even be possible after Morgan Monroe suffered a horrific motorcycle racing accident five years ago at the age of 17 that left her with a traumatic brain injury.

“It was the last race of the year in Savannah, Ga., and I was racing in both pro classes and I just had a random weird accident,” Morgan said.

She doesn’t remember a whole lot after her motorcycle accident that day back in 2016. But it would forever change the then 17-year-old’s path in life.

“I broke my L1 vertebrae in my back. I broke my right scapula. I broke my left hand, this little bone in my hand. I broke 3 ribs and then I had a traumatic brain injury that caused me to have a stroke and paralyzed the right side of my body,” Morgan said.

Her mother, Carey Monroe, watched in horror from the stands as her daughter crashed.

“I came running down and I’m sorry, got to her and she was knocked out. And that was longest three minutes of my life,” Carey said.

After spending 10 days in the hospital, Morgan began her long road to recovery.

“Woke up with my occupational therapist in the morning to help me get ready get in the shower, brush my teeth and then PT and speech throughout the day until the next day came around,” she said.

Carey said her daughter was down a lot of days and didn’t want to put in the work to continue recovering.

“But somebody came alongside her and said, ‘Hey, I’ve been there and I know what this is like and you need to keep pushing. And so she just kept pushing,” she said.

That hard, grueling work paid off. Morgan was able to finish high school with her class and went on to attend the University of Michigan-Flint, where she recently graduated with honors. Her chosen profession is one she is very familiar with: an occupational therapist.

“Getting through my recovery and realized how much I had learned just from my own experience, I thought I might be good at that,” Morgan said.

She already has a job lined up as an occupational therapist in Clio. She hopes to positively affect someone’s life like those who came alongside her during the recovery.

“I want to be able to let someone know that it’s going to be OK,” Morgan said.

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