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Motocross champion raising awareness for traumatic brain injury survivors

By Nkoyo Iyamba | Posted - Jun. 27, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.


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MURRAY — Three years ago a young biker almost died during a motocross competition in Wendover. Utah doctors saved his life, and he came back to town Monday to help raise awareness for traumatic brain injury survivors.

It wasn't easy getting here, either. Joshua Morros, 19, is trading horse power for pedal power to make a 2,700-mile journey from Reno, NV. to Vienna, VA. But he said that's nothing compared to how far he's come.

"(The) sky's the limit; and whatever's up there, I'm going to grab it," he said Monday during an interview at Intermountain Medical Center.

Three years ago, Joshua crashed during a motocross competition near Wendover. Back then, he never thought he'd be able to make this journey, riding 38 to 100 miles a day.

"There's time when I wanted to get off and start walking. I was tired. I just kept thinking to myself, ‘Others have it way harder, and they just keep pushing. If they can do it, I can do it,'" he said.

After he was injured, Joshua was flown to Intermountain Medical Center. His doctor, Don Van Boerum, wasn't sure Joshua would make it out of his coma. But 24 days after the accident, Joshua woke up.

"His parents told us all along, ‘Well, he's a fighter. He's a competitive spirit. He's going to bounce back. He's going to do just fine,'" Van Boerum recalled. "Those of us that see a lot of brain injuries know that's not always the case."

A team of cyclists from Intermountain Medical Center joined Joshua Monday for the 30-mile leg of his journey from Tooele to the hospital.

"Last time we were here it was just so bleak," Joshua's mother, Teresa Morros, said standing outside Intermountain Medical Center. "I never in my wildest dreams thought it would be to this point. I really didn't."

Teresa says now her son is on a life mission to help the millions of people living with traumatic brain injuries.

"We push him every day to understand that he doesn't have to necessarily be that champion on top of the a podium to touch people's lives," Teresa said, meaning Joshua didn't have to be a motocross champion to be a hero.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate about 56,000 Utahns are living with traumatic brain injury.

Email: niyamba@ksl.com

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