WARD, Ark. – An Arkansas teenager is defying odds after a serious brain injury he experienced just over two months ago while competing in the Arkansas High School Rodeo Finals.
Brannon McMinn, 17, from Ward, was riding his bull during the competition on June 3.
He got caught up underneath the bull, resulting in a serious brain injury.
Brannon McMinn said he does not remember anything about the accident.
“The only memory I have is pulling the feeding tube out, cause that made me start talking all the time,” said McMinn.
When his parents showed him photos of him in the hospital he said it was eye-opening.
“I love looking at the photos because, the end progression, I try to beat it,” stated McMinn.
In a little over two months, Brannon has been able to walk.
“It’s awesome! I love being able to walk. I just can’t wait till I can walk on my own, I’ll be running around everywhere,” stated McMinn.
He has regained his voice and slowly started moving the left side of his body.
“I had to let it know who was boss. I would say, move arm and then finally be able to pick it up and move it,” said McMinn.
He said his daily schedule includes therapy and walking around, and his favorite parts are being able to see his friends.
“It is a lot better than being around my parents,” stated McMinn.
As well as visiting the place he grew up volunteering, Beyond Boundaries, once a week and seeing his favorite horse, Lila.
“She is amazing… she is just my big baby,” said McMinn.
McMinn said it all feels like a dream, but this experience will help him in the future because he wants to be a physical therapist.
“Cause now I can say I have been through it and I can the kids and all that,” said McMinn.
Brannon McMinn said he is done bull riding but he looks forward to eventually going back to cheer on his friends.
Jacob Jackson will host a bull riding benefit rodeo Sept. 3 at 2bar2 Arena in Elpaso to help raise awareness for Traumatic Brain Injuries and to help Brannon and his family during the long road of recovery.
Beyond Boundaries is a non-profit, equine-assisted therapy clinic, and therapeutic riding center that serves both children and adults with a variety of diagnoses and disabilities.
Beyond Boundaries will be hosting an event, Aug. 26, in Cabot to raise money to support the non-profit with casino games, auction items, music and food.
The donations all go towards care for the horses to be able to continue care for those that they serve.
To find out more you can visit their website.