I have begun a dream of mine to give back my passion and support to those that have helped inspire me. Those that have been dealt obstacles and those that help individuals overcome the obstacles they have been dealt. Ultimate Courage Overcoming Obstacles will raise money for the Barrow Neurological Institute helping them further their treatment and research in neurological and spine injuries and disorders.

For more information or to help out this AWESOME cause, please contact Cristin at ultimatestamina@gmail.com or visit https://www.supportbarrow.org/cristinvandriel 
Barrow Neurological Institute of St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona, is internationally recognized as a leader in neurological research and patient care. Barrow treats patients with a wide range of neurological conditions, including brain and spinal tumors, cerebrovascular conditions, and neuromuscular disorders. Barrow’s clinicians and researchers are devoted to providing excellent patient care and finding better ways to treat neurological disorders.  

A Life Changing Experience In July 2000, I was hit by a car while cycling and suffered temporary paralysis, fractures in my spine, broken ribs, a concussion, among other serious injuries. A 16 yr old driver was not paying attention and ran off the road into the back of me. I had no feeling in my legs for a period of time, and was told I might not walk again. Life changing for anyone, let alone an athlete. I have overcome many set-backs as a result of this accident and deal with permanent spinal fractures and discomfort daily. In Jan. 2010 I underwent a complex spinal surgery where they placed 14 screws, 4 rods, and 2 plates in my lower spine and fused levels together to stabilize my spinal column. In December 2010 I underwent a 2nd surgery to take out some hardware in my spine that I was rejecting. Finally in April of 2011 I persevered through a 3rd major surgery where more hardware was put into my spine for further stabilization as well as several procedures to eliminate nerve compression and neurological deficit. I was given a second chance thanks to my amazing medical team of Dr. Randall Porter and his team at Barrow Neurological Institute / St. Joseph’s Hospital. Since that time I have had 2 more neurological surgeries and can’t thank Dr. Porter, Dr. Theordore, and the team at Barrow Neurological Institute for all their continued care and support.  What I have learned is that somethings can be taken from us so quickly and that we are capable of dealing with much more than we think we can. I have been giving the ability to run and will continue using that gift to help show others that they too can overcome major set-backs and obstacles life throws at them. One stride at a time!