Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Terry Tells of Struggles; 'I Lost More Than My Legs That Day, Your World Is Ripped from You'

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Terry Tells of Struggles; 'I Lost More Than My Legs That Day, Your World Is Ripped from You'

Article excerpt

Byline: Tara Cassidy Tara.Cassidy@dailymercury.com.au

TWO years ago, Terry Pepi's life changed in a split second.

The 57-year-old was once an active partner, father and granddad, who enjoyed spending time four-wheel driving, fishing and going for joyrides on his Harley with his wife Helen.

He loved his job at Aurizon, where he had worked for 40 years as a tutor driver, and cherished the little things, like a straight nights sleep or being able to run around with his four-year-old grandson.

But now all that has changed for Terry.

On June 26, 2015, he was involved in a serious collision while riding his motorbike to work along Mackay-Eungella Rd.

A driver halted beyond a giveway line ahead of Terry, who was travelling at 100kmh, and caused him to throw his bike down onto the road.

As a result, Terry had extensive injuries including a gash in his leg, six broken ribs, a broken wrist, broken shoulder, fractured neck and a broken back, which left him a paraplegic.

He was admitted to ICU, where he remained in a coma for a week, while his family went through huge trauma, not knowing if he would survive or what his quality of life would be.

He later suffered complications as a result of the crash and his condition was raised to quadriplegia. He has no feeling in his body from his chest down.

"I lost much more than my legs that day," he said.

"Although at first, when I was coming to terms with everything, I thought to myself 'okay you won't be able to walk, it's not the end of the world' you don't realise at that time everything else that goes.

"I have ridden motorbikes all my life, my wife and I loved travelling and going camping with our swags, all of that was gone and I didn't realise that then.

"I didn't realise people in wheelchairs can't control their bladders or bowels, have no sexual function.

"I loved my job and it never dawned on me that I couldn't do that too.

"Your whole world is honestly just ripped from you."

The driver of the car that collided with Terry's motorbike,was eventually charged with driving without due care. …

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