Partnerships Part 1: High Fives Foundation

Odie Pierce slashes a pow turn

This year we will be donating 5% of all sales to three charities. The three blogs in this “Partnerships” series will explore the three non-profits we’ve chosen to work with, what our contributions will support, and why we chose to work with them. 

High Fives Foundation

One of the first people to visit me on the third floor of the Idaho Falls hospital after I got out of surgery on my spinal column was Stu Wride. Stu is in a wheelchair and spent three months on the same floor eight years ago after his Bronco rolled off Highway 22.

Millimeters and chance decide the result of a spinal injury. I was able to begin walking the day after surgery. For some people it takes months. For others, like Stu, an accident in which control was lost for a matter of seconds will mean life in a wheelchair. 

Stu Wride carving a turn at Targhee Photo: J.C. Wride
Another friend, and Sego Bus manager, Justin Adams spent time supporting his girlfriend while she underwent spinal surgeries at the Idaho Falls hospital. Justin told me that she had been unable to move her lower body after the surgeries. But, thanks to a grant from the High Fives Foundation she’d been able to focus on physical therapy after leaving the hospital and returned to the mountains and outdoor activities she loved. Just knowing that grants of that nature existed helped put my mind at ease as concerns about healthcare coverage and hospital bills loomed.

Stu Wride riding the Sego Cleaver 88 Photo: J.C. Wride

Through the help of the engineers and adaptive ski designers at Dynaccess you can also see Stu up at Targhee on weekends and powder days. Stu too was familiar with the work of High Fives. He explained to me that the name came about because giving a high five is a free and monumental gesture on the journey back to a happy life. For those of us who love to ski, there are few things better than reaching the bottom of a run and receiving one from a partner stoked to see us tearing it up.

Stu and J.C. Wride moments after exchanging a high five.

The amount of time and support someone needs when returning to receiving high fives on the slopes from a life altering injury is huge. I was lucky enough to have help from my family, friends like Stu, and my employer. I also had good health insurance, excellent physical therapists and millimeters of good fortune which have made my recovery a successful one so far. My co-workers and I have seen the value of a foundation like High Fives up close. No one can bounce back from a spinal injury without support.

In order to be part of the support system for folks who have had life altering injuries, Sego will be donating a portion of this season’s sales to the High Fives Foundation with the goal of providing a year long scholarship to their rehabilitation services.

1 comment

  • Justin Zenger

    I am one of Stu’s close friends from way back. He inspired me to get my first mountain bike in the late 80s. We backpacker, skied and camped together for years prior to his accident. Thank you Sego. ❤Stu.

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