Jamie is just your typical 17-year-old teenage girl. She’s a high school student, secretary of Student Council and the Student Outreach Committee, an honor student, the high school girls’ lacrosse team manager, active in her class activities, and a member of the travel club that plans to travel to London and Paris the Spring of 2019. After school and weekends, she works part time at JC Penney’s as a retail consultant.
After a second stroke left her with substantial physical deficiencies on her right side, “I didn’t think I was ever going to be able to do “normal” sports again,” recalls the young lady. In the winter of 2015, Friends of Stowe Adaptive Sports awarded Jamie her first ski scholarship. “I remember thinking, do I have the confidence to ski again? What if I’m not strong enough, what if I fall? My body isn’t “normal” anymore?” With a lot of hard work and perseverance, and the help of her instructor Tommy, Jamie learned how to ski again, and adapt to her new “normal” body. “When I got off that chairlift for the first time, I was again able to experience that feeling of being on top of the world! But best of all, I was able to regain the confidence I had lost and am now stronger than I have ever been before!”
Jamie newest true passion is swimming. In 2017, Friends of Stowe Adaptive Sports provided her with a scholarship with Just Ducky Aquatics to learn how to swim again and regain her confidence in the pool. Jamie now swims four nights a week with her local swim club and competes in regular swim meets throughout Central and Northern Vermont during the winter. Jamie recently participated in a Paralympic adaptive swim clinic at UMass Amherst coached by Paralympic gold medalist swimmers!
In her spare time, Jamie is a Vermont Make-A-Wish Ambassador and has given over 20 speeches about her wish to swim with the Sea Turtles in Hawaii in 2015. She has also volunteered at many Friends of Stowe Adaptive Sports events over the past few years as a way of giving back to an organization that has given her the ability to participate in sports again. Last summer, Jamie participated in her first 5km kid’s obstacle course at the Trapp Family Lodge.
James Hathaway, CEO of Make-A-Wish-Vermont was so moved by her story that he asked that she writes a book about it. In August 2018, Jamie published a book illustrated by Leonard Kenyon of Arlington, Vermont, entitled “Wishes Are Medicine”. It tells the story of how she recovered from a brain aneurysm at age 14, and how Make-A-Wish played an important role in her recovery. She toured several bookstores in Vermont and New York soon after the release. Well done Jamie, we are so proud of you! Please support Jamie and get your copy of “Wishes are Medicine” here.
When Jamie graduates from high school, she plans to attend college and aspires to someday become an FBI profiler.