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Texas Teen Paralyzed in School Bus Crash is Riding Horses Again

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Maina Mehrotra2 years ago

18-year-old Haley Johannsen is back to riding horses despite a tragic school bus accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down.

About the Crash and Injury

According to KWTX, the crash occurred on January 17, 2012 around 7:30 a.m. when a Lowe’s delivery truck missed the stop sign and crashed into an Academy ISD school bus.

The crash took the life of the bus driver and left 29 student injured. Haley, 14 at the time, was the most seriously injured as her back was now broken. 

Haley was left with the realization that her life will never be the same; however, her family was determined to see to it that Haley remained positive. When Haley asked her mother “Am I ever going to ride a horse again?,” Harvest, Haley’s mother responded “absolutely, even if it kills us all, absolutely.”

Four years after the accident and intensive therapy, Haley is defying the odds and riding again. “It's the greatest thing I have ever done because it feels like nothing can stop me,” Haley said. But it gets even better as Haley is also walking in a set of braces and a walker, showing that resilience can overcome adversity.

Texas Auto Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT):

  • 3,534 traffic fatalities were recorded in Texas in 2014, a 3.7-percent increase from the 3,408 deaths reported in 2013.
  • An additional 237,941 people were injured in auto accidents in 2014 with 17,152 people sustaining incapacitating injuries.
  • Based on reportable crash data for 2014, TxDOT estimates:
    • One person was injured in an auto accident in Texas every 2 hours and 29 minutes in 2014.
    • One person was injured every 2 minutes and 13 seconds.
    • A reportable crash occurred every 66 seconds.


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