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Eric LeGrand Reaches Out to Paralized Teen At Hospital
February 23, 2012 - Children's Specialized Hospital

Eric LeGrand, former football player for Rutgers University who suffered a spinal cord injury during a game, made a special visit to PSE&G Children’s Specialized Hospital to meet 18 year old Jersey City resident Janekia Wright. Janekia also suffered a complete spinal cord injury, but her accident involved being an unrestrained passenger in a car loaded with her friends. In October, Janekia, was sleeping in the front seat of her friend’s car as they left a McDonald’s early in the morning. She doesn’t remember the accident. She just remembers waking up weeks later in the ICU, with a ventilator, unable to speak or even move.

After months of physical, occupational, speech and respiratory rehabilitation at PSE&G Children’s Specialized Hospital in New Brunswick, Janekia is ready to go home. But her life will never be the same again. 

Eric wanted to give Janekia hope. That there is life after suffering a life changing injury. 
“You just have to stay positive,” said LeGrand. “It’s all that matters. We like to say ‘Chop the Moment’ Take one day at a time and don’t let anyone or anybody get you down and if you keep your mind to it, you’ll reach your goals.”
Janekia’s eyes lit up as they talked about things they had in common. Getting off a ventilator, getting their g-tubes removed, how to get around in their chairs. It surely was a special day for Janekia and her family to meet Eric.
“It was so great to meet him. Knowing he’s accomplished so much,” said Wright. “The first thing I’m going to do at home is party like a rock star and then go shopping and hit the mall hard.”
Janekia is scheduled to go home on February 27. With a house full of family waiting to welcome her, Janekia is looking forward being home. A move that would not have been made possible with the generosity of the Central Jersey Spinal Cord Association who granted the funding to pay for the special chair lift that will be installed in Janekia’s home. 
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