The Drew Crew Champions
2017 - Chandler McBride and Matthew Klos
Hi my name is Chandler McBride. I live, and was raised, in the small town of Three Rivers Michigan. June 16 2012, at the age of 17 I experienced an accident that would leave me paralyzed with only limited upper body functionality in my shoulders, biceps, and chest. While I was at a friends house to celebrate his birthday I dove into their swimming pool. Not realizing how close it was, I hit the shallow end of the pool head first. At that moment, I broke my neck and severed my spinal-cord.
Hello, my name is Matthew Klos. I am a twenty-seven year old Artist. In 2012 I graduated from the Art Institute of Boston with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Following graduation I ended up moving back home to Newburyport, MA after my Mother suffered a severe stroke. The morning of April 25th, 2016, I woke up with excruciating back pain, and nausea. After getting to the Emergency Room and being there for about ten minutes, I could not move my legs or feel them. About ten hours later at Beth Israel Hospital I was told that I had an Arteriovenous Malformation inside of my spinal cord. This is a rare condition when blood vessels
grow abnormally and are tangled, overtime the pressure became too much and they erupted, causing me to bleed into my spinal cord. I am considered a complete T-10 Paraplegic, paralyzed from the bellybutton down; a permanent diagnosis.. In the Fall of 2014 my girlfriend moved in with my Mother and I. Together we started creating a studio for our artistic passions.
Since that day in 2012, I went through extensive physical therapy to strengthen the limited upper body mobility possible for myself. I then graduated from Three Rivers High School and am now in my fourth year of college at Grand Valley State University pursuing a degree in Accounting, aspiring to become a CPA.
As a result of muscle deterioration due to a lack of movement and control, one area of need in my life is therapeutic medical equipment to help correct areas in my back and lower extremities. This equipment would correct the issues I have along with preventing further problems I've experienced with pressure sores and muscle deterioration.
Since my injury I have continued working on the studio space to make it as accessible and efficient as possible. With the aid of a stand up wheelchair I have been able to do so much more than I could have imagined. I have storage and plumbing that I have redone under my darkroom sink to make things more
or depression that comes with a life-changing event such as this. Even through all of the struggles, I still try to push myself physically and mentally to where I know I want to be in life. I was accepted into my Alma Mater’s Full-Time Photography program. I am trying to set a deadline for finishing the studio so that it is completed in advance before Graduate school this Fall. Part of this completion is not only based on accessibility of the studio grounds, but also in the tools I will be using constantly, on my path to my dream, and during my Graduate school studies.
functional, accessible, and efficient. Every day I face some kind of struggle. Whether it is burning nerve pain, or muscle tone which hinders my ability to move, or simply the anxiety