Joe Rothpearl (Bone Graft Recipient)
Driven to Overcome
In 2011, Joe Rothpearl suffered a catastrophic injury to the C6-C7 spinal segment in his neck. This spinal segment provides essential structural support and flexibility to the neck, and plays a vital role in protecting the spinal cord.
So, when doctors told Joe he would be a quadriplegic relying on a ventilator, he was left with an important decision to make—approving a fusion surgery. Joe gave his surgeon the thumbs up, and his injured disk was soon replaced with a donor bone.
Within 2 years, Joe had two more surgeries, one of those involving donor bone to another area of his cervical spine. After his third surgery, Joe began the road to recovery.
Although Joe's injury has led to his diagnosis with cervical spondylotic myelopathy, he looks forward to every day and his passion for Dodge Challengers to help fight the pain. He even developed a blog, Every Day Brings New Challengers, for the sole purpose of sharing unique photos of Challengers. This blog quickly turned into a website, ChallengeroftheDay.com, in order to share even more. But his passion doesn't stop there.
Joe has also developed an impressive collection of die cast Challengers over the years—a hobby he picked up as a kid.
"Throughout the years I had a lot of days where I needed a smile and Challengers always came through for me," he says. "Joy is all I ever feel when I open a new die cast or sit or drive in mine, or even just stare at any scale version."
He has developed a noteworthy following across Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, and hopes his collection of photographs and videos bring a smile to those who may need it.
Furthermore, Joe's gratitude for his donor has inspired him to actively encourage others to become organ and tissue donors themselves. "You never know, who around you, is already a recipient", he notes. "And there is no greater gift a person can give in this world. It is the gift of a lifetime."