Calgary teen paralyzed in tobogganing accident

The family of a Calgary teenager who was paralyzed from the waist down in a tobogganing accident is sharing their story in hopes of preventing a similar tragedy.

See Full Article

Alex was tobogganing with friends on Dec. 21, his fifteenth birthday, when he hit a patch of ice and crashed head-first into a pole. Unable to feel his legs, he was rushed to hospital where doctors confirmed that three vertebrae in his back were broken.

Alex, whose last name is being withheld at the request of his family, has been in the hospital ever since. He told CTV Calgary that “all signs point” towards the possibility that he will be paraplegic for the rest of his life.

“Watching your child suffer, day to day, and fight for things that we take for granted is mind-boggling to say the least,” said the teen’s mother, Stella.

Alex’s accident occurred on a hill that’s not approved for tobogganing by the city. But his parents say the city should at least post a warning sign in the area or fence off the poles at the bottom of the hill.

They also hope that Alex’s story will encourage other teenagers and families to be more careful while tobogganing.

“We hope no other family has to get that phone call,” said Alex’s father, John.

There are more than 20 city-maintained tobogganing hills in Calgary. Coun. Shane Keating said residents should flag safety issues in other areas to the municipality.

A GoFundMe page has been created to help Alex’s family purchase a wheelchair and modify their home and vehicles.

The once-active teen, who was in the cadets and hoped to join the Canadian Armed Forces someday, now says he would like to become a psychologist to help others in need.

“It’s a lot easier for someone to relate to someone who has been through a traumatic experience like this so I think this is going to help me a lot in life,” he said.

With a report from CTV Calgary’s Kathy Le



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Forecast anticipates a 'two-faced' winter for Canadians

    Canada News CTV News
    Despite warm and mild temperatures stretching on throughout most of the fall season, the wrath of winter may be coming soon, experts say. But frigid temperatures aren’t expected to last. According to a report by The Weather Network, Canadians should prepare for colder-than-normal temperatures across most of the country in December. Source
  • CTV News in Pakistan: Afghans forced out of their homeland now homeless

    World News CTV News
    PAKISTAN - In a Pakistan park meant for children to play in, there are Afghan children struggling to survive. Living in flimsy tents, without the basics like running water or enough food, with only their mothers for protection – most of them widows. Source
  • Hundreds at Harvard, NYC, Chicago protest China's actions

    World News CTV News
    CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Hundreds of people gathered Tuesday at Harvard University and near Chinese consulates in New York and Chicago to support protesters who have called for that country's leader to step down amid severe antivirus restrictions in the biggest demonstrations against the government in Beijing in decades. Source
  • Chinese spaceship with 3 aboard docks with space station

    World News CTV News
    BEIJING - Three Chinese astronauts docked early Wednesday with their country's space station, where they will overlap for several days with the three-member crew already onboard and expand the facility to its maximum size. Docking with the Tiangong station came at 5:42 a.m. Source
  • Colorado governor visits gay club shooting memorial

    World News CTV News
    News - Colorado Gov. Jared Polis on Tuesday visited the memorial outside a gay club where five people were killed last week, solemnly walking along a line of flowers, crosses and signs bearing the photos and names of the victims outside the building with the club's owners. Source
  • Former premier Jason Kenney resigns from Alberta legislature

    Canada News CTV News
    Thousands asked for it while he was leader and now Jason Kenney has done it, announcing his resignation as a member of the Alberta legislature on social media on Tuesday. The former Alberta premier and United Conservative Party leader made his statement on Twitter, thanking constituents for supporting him during his 25 years in politics. Source
  • Records: Bullet found near 2 teens' bodies came from suspect

    World News CTV News
    INDIANAPOLIS - An unspent bullet found between the bodies of two teenage girls slain in 2017 "had been cycled through" a pistol owned by the suspect in their deaths, according to court documents an Indiana judge ordered released Tuesday. Source
  • Landmark same-sex marriage bill wins Senate passage

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON - The Senate passed bipartisan legislation Tuesday to protect same-sex marriages, an extraordinary sign of shifting national politics on the issue and a measure of relief for the hundreds of thousands of same-sex couples who have married since the Supreme Court's 2015 decision that legalized gay marriage countrywide. Source
  • Biden, Macron ready to talk Ukraine, trade in state visit

    World News CTV News
    French President Emmanuel Macron is headed to Washington for the first state visit of Joe Biden's presidency – a revival of diplomatic pageantry that had been put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Biden-Macron relationship had a choppy start. Source
  • Hawaii volcano eruption has some on alert, draws onlookers

    World News CTV News
    HILO, Hawaii - The first eruption in 38 years of the world's largest active volcano is attracting onlookers to a national park for "spectacular" views of the event, and it's also dredging up bad memories among some Hawaii residents who have been through harrowing volcanic experiences in the past. Source