District of Invermere councilor Spring Hawes became a quadriplegic after a biking accident.

Making great strides in a wheelchair

District of Invermere councillor Spring Hawes is living life to the fullest.

It can be very shocking how someone’s life can change so quickly after an accident. Just ask District of Invermere councillor Spring Hawes. She is the perfect example of someone whose life was changed drastically by a biking accident, but overcame the barriers it presented with flying colours.

Several  years ago, Spring was in a severe biking accident. She was riding over a high obstacle and took a wrong turn. She fell off her bike and landed on her head, which left Spring unconscious. An ambulance rushed her to a hospital.

“I kind of remember the ambulance coming,” reflected Spring. “I didn’t really think too much.”

Spring’s biking accident resulted in her becoming a quadriplegic. She is now confined to a motorized chair and has little use of her arms, and no use of her fingers or legs. The biking accident had changed Spring’s life forever. It is now a lot harder for her to do things, and she can’t continue to enjoy her old hobbies, like riding her bike.

Spring doesn’t look at the changes as being all bad, though. She has learnt a lot of new skills. Having mobility challenges also makes learning certain tasks in life very rewarding. Spring has recently learnt to drive her own wheelchair-accessible van with the help of some adapted equipment.

“It’s pretty neat that I can drive again after my accident,” said Spring with a smile. With an accessible van, and a newly built accessible house, Spring can live her life to the fullest, no matter what challenges she has.

Spring has not only done things to make her own life easier, she loves to help other people thrive in this valley as well.  She has been a volunteer for A.C.E. (Access in the Community for Everyone) and along with the rest of the committee, Spring helps make the town of Invermere an accessible and enjoyable place for people of all abilities.