Bike Accident leads to Brain Injury

Debra L. Drew, DVM, a dedicated small animal veterinarian, was an avid cyclist (25 to 75 miles weekly) and, unfortunately, had a bicycle accident in an area of unmarked construction in Tampa, FL. There was also no indication that the newly installed road portion would have a steep drop onto the road that remained unpaved, essentially a missing paved area.

Debra is an experienced cyclist but had no way of preventing her accident due to the road condition and the lack of warning. She fell onto her head and suffered a traumatic brain injury and brain bleed from the concussion forces of the accident. The Wednesday Night Wolfpack, the Emergency response team, and the Neurosurgery team at Tampa General Hospital saved Debra's life that night.

Emergency surgery was necessary and one quarter of her skull needed to be removed (and preserved in a tissue bank for a month) in order for the surgeons to control the bleeding in her brain. She remained hospitalized for two months and underwent two surgeries, began speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy.

After learning how to talk, walk, and drive again, she is also regaining her memories and mental strength at a miraculous speed.  Debra is currently shadowing a veterinarian in order to practice her veterinary skills and knowledge, as well as to make new pathways to old memories that, fortunately, are still there.

Debra is determined. She has fought hard to recover from the brain bleed and stroke-like injury by doing physical therapy to strengthen her weaker right side and shadowing to reform the broken pathways to her memories and veterinary knowledge.

Debra will keep fighting and won't ever give up on her passion of practicing veterinary medicine or cycling again. It has been two years since that bicycle accident and the road to recovery has been long.  

While Debra has already overcome so much, she still has a long way to go.  She has exhausted her savings and credit cards to pay bills while recovering, doing physical therapy, and shadowing.  She also continues to have ongoing medical expenses and is now in serious jeopardy of losing her home.  This additional financial stress will, undoubtedly, deter her healing process.

We are coming together in the hope of raising awareness about Debra's story.  Please share her story with anyone who loves bicycles and animals the way that she does, and, perhaps, they can help by making a donation and sharing her story too; it will truly make a difference to this very determined and courageous woman.   Let's help Debra so that she may continue to heal and inspire!  

Thank you so much for your support!
  • Heidi Radunovich 
    • $100 
    • 17 mos
  • Tiffany Forehand 
    • $50 
    • 30 mos
  • Allison Tiberia 
    • $900 
    • 35 mos
  • Benjamin LaMonte 
    • $50 
    • 35 mos
  • Jarrett Barrios 
    • $250 
    • 36 mos
See all

Fundraising team (16)

Debra L Drew Dvm 
Organizer
Tampa, FL
Andrew Grenville 
Team member
Charles Fox 
Team member
Dawn Baker 
Team member
Desiree' Ugosmith 
Team member
See all
  • #1 fundraising platform

    More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more

  • GoFundMe Guarantee

    In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more

  • Expert advice, 24/7

    Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more