On October 16, 2010, in Decorah, Iowa, Chris Norton was severely injured while making a tackle on a kickoff, fracturing his C3-C4 vertebrae. After being told he had a 3% chance of ever regaining movement below the neck, Chris has defied the odds every step of the way, demonstrating a faith and determination to overcome his circumstance that has inspired thousands.
The day after his injury, Chris awoke from surgery without any movement below his neck. He spent the following year in Rochester, MN, devoting his time to intense, daily therapy sessions. Throughout his stay he met others with spinal cord injuries and neurological muscular disorders who were fighting the same kind of daily battle to regain mobility. The impact these remarkable individuals had on Chris stuck with him, so that when he returned to Luther College the next fall he felt inspired to launch the SCI CAN Foundation, with the mission of providing opportunities to individuals in need of a path to recovery.
Four years and countless hours of therapy later Chris continues on his way to recovery and the SCI CAN Foundation has flourished. Most recently Chris was able to stand unassisted for four minutes, but his journey is far from over. In order to realize his goal of walking across the stage on graduation day he has devoted the final semester leading up to his commencement ceremony to a full-time therapy program in Plymouth, Michigan. Throughout his journey Chris has never lost sight of the idea that with faith, hard work and determination anything is possible. The SCI CAN Foundation has expanded on this philosophy so that others are inspired to overcome adversity just as Chris has — one step at a time.
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