Concert held for paralyzed friend - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Concert held for paralyzed friend

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 By Tayleigh Davis - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - It's a night for Benjamin Daniel and his best friend to celebrate. They're  both 20-years-old and have been able to walk their whole lives, until recently.

On June 7th, Daniel fell asleep at the wheel while driving home from work. He crashed into a tree. He broke his neck in four places, crushed vertebra in his back, and punctured and collapsed his lungs.

"Everything up until now seems like a dream," Daniel said. "It as a very scary and humbling experience."

An experience Daniel can share with his best friend Chad Blakey who got into a motorcycle wreck just seven months before. It paralyzed him from the waist down too.

"Especially with him being my best friend and knowing what he was going to go through -I know how hard it is," Blakey said.

Now that they're both recovering, several bands that are friends with Daniel played at the Barn tonight in Pelham to raise money to build him a customized van.

Daniel's brother- Wes Daniel who is also in a band says the wreck has brought the family closer to God and each other.

"One at a time, Ben overcomes each prognosis.," Daniel said. "We have faith in him and we put our faith in the power above."

Daniel has already been able to move his arms and hands more than doctors predicted which allows him to operate the hand-drive chair. His next goal is to eventually drive on his own.

The total cost for Daniel's medical bills is $1.2 million. Insurance is paying about 75 percent. In January, Daniel will go back to Atlanta for six weeks of rehab.


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