Dani Schirmer

Dani SchirmerDaniela Schrimer was injured in February of 2009 due to a fall in a restroom.  The slip resulted in a broken vertebra in the neck.  Life as Dani had known was changed forever as she struggled to live as a quadriplegic.  Paralysis changed Dani’s world and filled it with many unexpected challenges.

When asked about the struggles she experiences on a daily basis, Dani stated “My biggest day to day struggle used to be simply getting around places.  Now that I have power-assist wheels, I do not struggle with this aspect of dependence anymore.  Next on the list of hardships is getting out of bed every morning due to dizzy spells, which are a secondary condition of my spinal cord injury.   Stiffness and spasms are always with me, and can be a nuisance.”  Even though Dani encounters inconvenient and cumbersome tasks she keeps her head up choosing to view the “simple” things as “big” things.

Dani loves going outside especially since she lives by the ocean.  She exercises, does therapeutic horseback riding, and is currently working on various writing projects.  Dani happily remarked about some events in her future, “In the next few weeks, I am looking forward to various parties and social functions!  And things I am excited about in the next year are a trip to Italy, getting a service dog, and applying to graduate school.”

Dani has a great outlook on life and is most proud of the level of independence she has achieved in a short time…she lives 2,500 miles away from home.  She attributes her yearning for independence to sheer will and determination.  She stated “I never knew what I could do or what was possible before I had my SCI.”

Dani was granted $2800 from the Foundation for power-assisted manual wheels to allow her independence in her chair.  She is delighted not to have to rely on people to push her wheelchair 24/7.  Ironically, Dani knew about Travis Roy because he talked at her high school.  Six years later Dani recalled Travis’ inspiration and called upon his influential work to receive a grant.  She is grateful!