Before she could even reach the pedals, 22-year-old Jesi Stracham wanted to drive fast. The professional motorsports racer went from Power Wheels Jeeps to go-karts.
She told the TODAY Show, “My dad built me a custom mini Grand Prix car all DuPonted out, ’cause I love Jeff Gordon. It was great.”
But her love of racing took a turn for the worse this past January as she woke up paralyzed from the chest down after a serious motorcycle accident.
However, while she was unconscious, her family opted for her to receive an experimental surgery in which she was only the second person in the world to undergo.
The first person to receive the surgery was 26-year-old Jordan Fallis who was paralyzed after attempting a back-flip on his dirt bike. “I saw it as my only shot,” Fallis said. Fallis had no nerve signals in his spinal cord, but can now move his legs and walk in the pool, following his procedure.