Will to Walk
story by Abby O'Bryan
Timothy Karl Johns – they call him "T.K." – was good at everything. His talent in all aspects of life, including skateboarding, snowboarding, and art did not go unnoticed by those who knew him. His future was bright.
At 25, T.K. decided to move to Colorado to indulge his passion for snowboarding. It changed the Henderson native's life forever.
“I had a bad feeling when (T.K.) told me he was moving to Colorado,” T.K.’s father Tim Johns says. “I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but something just didn’t feel right.”
His father's fears were confirmed when he received a call that T.K. was in the hospital.
Snowboarding down a mountain trail, T.K. hit a strip of dirt causing him to fly into the air and land on his head. T.K. was unable to move for hours. The snow patrol found his still body almost completely covered in snow.
Doctors gave T.K. two days to live, but T.K. didn’t give up. The impact of the fall damaged 80 percent of his cerebellum, severely damaging his brain. He was in a coma for three months before he woke up and began a long road to recovery.
Nine years later, the 34-year-old has come a long way from where he was after the accident. Though T.K. is in a wheelchair, he slowly is learning how to regain his abilities.
""It's not a dream for me [to walk] it's a probability, I will walk." T.K. says. "I know I will walk."
He is always positive about his situation.
"Getting hurt was not the worst thing that ever happened to me." T.K. says. "It made me much more grateful."
T.K. may not be able to do everything he used to but doesn’t let that stop him. He tries to walk when he has the opportunity, participates in physical activities, such as the high ropes course at his family’s Brain Injury Adventure Camp in Henderson County.
His life has changed, but that won't stop him from living his life as if it hadn't.