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Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals

Severe car accident gives Nebraska teen a new outlook on life

March 27, 2017

Severe car accident gives Nebraska teen a new outlook on life from Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals on Vimeo.


LINCOLN, Neb. (MADONNA)--Colleen Brockmann says her youngest son's big heart is more visible after a car accident this past Father's Day. Her 17-year-old son Andrew suffered a major brain injury as a result of the crash. The West Point, Nebraska, teen came to Madonna after spending two months in intensive care, and has been improving ever since.

While Colleen says there were a lot of unknowns during the journey, Andrew is more thankful for the life he has today.

Moms of teenagers know hugs aren’t always popular, but Colleen Brockmann says her 17-year-old son gives more hugs today than ever.

“He’s a very caring kid, he’s got a big heart. Something that you didn’t see in him before, not that he didn’t have it but … it just is coming out,” said Collen.

It's not only hugs though.

“I bring the fun,” said Andrew.

Colleen says she’s thankful for Andrew’s optimism, but more thankful he’s alive after a car crash last June.

“You hear people say life is short, it is. You don’t ever think it’s going to happen to you,” said Colleen.

But for the Brockmann family it did happen. Colleen says doctors told her Andrew would need intense rehabilitation for a traumatic brain injury. Wondering where to go next, Colleen says she took a nurse's recommendation.

“Telling us how awesome this place was and how they can make miracles happen and … it was the only place that we wanted him to be," said Colleen. Quickly, Colleen says she realized they made the right choice.

“They got him going, they got him up out of a wheelchair and got him moving so that was a lot better because this is where we wanted him to be,” said Colleen.

From relearning how to walk using the Lokomat, to working on strength and coordination in his right arm using the Armeo Spring, Colleen watched her son accomplish the goals he set out for himself both on land and in the water.

“You see him walking down the hall every day and it just blows my mind from where he came from,” said Colleen.

Andrew says walking is his favorite. “It felt amazing,” said Andrew.

After returning home to West Point, Nebraska Andrew has started school again and has gotten back to his passion on the green. He says his swing may not be perfect, but he's happy to be golfing.

“I love it,” said Andrew.

Andrew's next goal is golf tryouts in the spring. Colleen says it wouldn’t have been possible without faith, and Madonna.

“There’s been so many ups. And not many downs, maybe that’s the best memory,” said Colleen.

Learn about Madonna's Pediatric Program here.