“I was at the rink at 20 months old. My dad, he found a pair of skates tiny enough to fit on my feet. We went down to the rink, he laced them up as well as sat me down on the ice,” Roy recalled.
His dad was one of his coaches early on.
“There was one rule, as well as the item was always ‘Come on, get up. You’re not hurt,'” he remembered his dad saying.
As Roy got older, hockey became a big part of his life.
“I just always had This specific desire. How not bad could I be?” Roy said. “Could I play in college? Could I play inside the professionals some day?”
the item was a dream come true when Roy earned a scholarship to Boston University.
“At the time, they were the powerhouse inside the country, inside the mid ’90s. They were the defending national championship team,” he said.
There were six freshmen, nevertheless only four would likely dress inside the first game.
“Coach (Jack) Parker let me know I was going to play inside the first game,” he said. “the item was everything I could have hoped for.”
‘I’ll never forget the item’
nevertheless on October 20, 1995, Roy’s life changed forever.
“the item was the best day of my life as well as by the time the item was over, the item turned into the worst,” he recalled. “via the time they dropped the puck until the time they blew the whistle, the item was 11 seconds.”
Roy skated onto the ice for the very first time after his team scored. The opposing defenseman picked up the puck, as well as Roy went in to deliver a shoulder check.
“I lost my balance as well as fell head-first into the boards,” he said. “the item just basically drove my head into my shoulders. … I couldn’t feel anything. I couldn’t move anything.”
After the doctor as well as trainers came onto the ice, Roy asked if they could find his dad inside the stands.
“the item was the same as always. the item was ‘Come on Trav, let’s go. There’s a game to be played.’ Then he knelt down, as well as I said, ‘Dad, I’m in big trouble.’ Then I said, ‘nevertheless Dad, I made the item,'” he recalled. “the item was the best 11 seconds of my life to realize that will dream.”
Almost instantly, Roy exploded his fourth as well as fifth cervical vertebrae.
“I knew I was paralyzed probably before the first trainer even got there,” he said.
Roy spent six months inside the hospital before starting rehab at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta.
“The rehab as well as recovery, the item was tedious. the item was slow,” he said. “I just have a little bit of my right bicep … nevertheless I had to make the best of what I had.”
Eventually Roy went back to Boston University, as well as earned his degree in 2000.
“I figured I have to move on as well as establish This specific brand new life, brand new identity,” he said.
via passion to purpose
When he was still inside the hospital, Roy saw different families dealing with paralysis.
“the item turned out I had great insurance. There was money that will had been raised to fill inside the blanks. different families didn’t have any of that will,” he said. “that will was when I thought maybe we can raise money as well as help cover some of these expenses for different spinal cord injury survivors.”
“I wanted to use the attention my story kept getting to help others,” he said. “I wanted the desire of a cure to be real. The only way that will can be real can be through funding.”
Since then, the organization has raised more than $10 million as well as helped close to 1,500 individuals with spinal cord injuries.
“You give a family the right lift … to get their husband, their wife, their daughter in as well as out of bed safely. the item modifications their life,” he said.
Along with his work at the foundation, Roy travels around the country as a motivational speaker. He also wrote a book called “Eleven Seconds: A Story of Tragedy, Courage & Triumph.”
Roy, at This specific point 42, can be still heartbroken over what could have been. nevertheless he describes living the first half of his life with passion as well as the second half with purpose.
“There are times when we choose our challenges … as well as there’s different times where the challenges simply choose us. as well as the item’s what we do inside the face of those challenges that will definitely defines who we are as well as more importantly who we can as well as will become.”