Where were other 50 or so people ticketed for not wearing helmets?
Learning about a tragic event based on a personal testimonial always provides a message that will long be remembered. Such a message was provided by the family of Jordon Perry, the 14-year-old who died two years ago following an accident near his home in St. Felix.
Jordon was riding his bicycle when the accident happened. He usually wore his helmet, but on this day the 12-year-old didn’t. The result was tragic as he suffered a major brain injury. He lived for two years after the crash, all the while receiving loving care from his grieving family and hospital staff.
The family relived the horror last week at a seminar in Charlottetown. Jordon’s mom, Tracy, said she doesn’t want to see any other family experience what hers went through five years ago. Recounting the pain would all be worth it if another family were spared that experience. The Perry family’s suffering will never go away as the family is still trying to cope with Jordon’s death.
Mrs. Perry told the group attending the helmet and brain injury prevention session that Jordon made one mistake and it ended up costing him his life. She implored those attending the session not to make the same mistake that her son made.
The reason why more than 50 people were at last Saturday’s session was because they were all ticketed this summer in Charlottetown for not wearing a helmet. They had the option of paying a fine or attending the one-day workshop to learn how helmets can prevent brain injuries.
Making the decision to attend the day’s sessions may well save some lives.
Mrs. Perry is now on a mission to make sure her son’s death won’t be forgotten. She will continue speaking out to advocate for helmet use in the hopes that it may prevent others from suffering a brain injury.
Kenneth Murnaghan, president of the Brain Injury Association of P.E.I., told the group at the information session, if you won’t wear a helmet for yourself while biking then you should wear one for the sake of your family members. Murnaghan has become a well-known public face across P.E.I. for the prevention of brain injuries.
There were 114 individuals ticketed by city police for riding a bike without a helmet. It was disheartening to see that more than 50 chose not to attend the seminar, missing out on messages that may well spare people injuries or worse.
Murnaghan stressed that not wearing a helmet is in many ways not just a dangerous decision, but also a very selfish one. It affects everyone in the family says Murnaghan. He knows what he is talking about, living with a brain injury since a bicycle accident when he was 10.
Many attending the session likely did not want to be there and were probably unhappy with getting ticketed during the summer. But as a Perry family member said, if police had stopped Jordon that
September morning seven years ago for not having his helmet on, he might still be alive and well today.
At least one biker at the session got the message. She was caught because wearing a helmet made it difficult to wear earphones as she liked to listen to music while cycling. Now she will sacrifice her entertainment for safety. For that lesson, she has Jordon Perry to thank.
The best way to treat brain injuries is always through prevention and everyone can do something about that option.