He's a poet who lives every day without more than 80 percent of his short-term memory, And he's faced adversity many of us have never endured. KKCO 11 News spoke with this motivational speaker who ended his Colorado high school tour in Fruita on Friday.
Just read some of the lyrics to one of his poems:
Yo, yo, yo, I'm about to flow... The road he lost control, the pain keeps getting old... The sound of screeching tires is something that's gotta go...
He has a powerful story to tell, and it's made a difference for teenagers across Colorado. His name is Tyler Presnell, and his goal is mold every teenage soul.
"It was a very powerful month to know that I impacted almost 18,000 people, like, that's huge," Presnell said.
When he was just 14-years old, Presnell was a passenger in a serious car accident that nearly took his life .
"I had to relearn how to walk, talk, who my family was, who my friends were, how to eat, how to go to the bathroom," he said.
It took 22 surgeries, two stints on life support and six weeks in a coma, but the now 27-year old is a survivor.
On Friday, Presnell shared his story with students at Fruita Monument High School in hopes of making teens more respectful drivers and responsible passengers, a lesson they can apply to their every day lives.
"Driving respectfully, safely, because a lot of kids, especially like leaving the parking lot, it's really scary," FMHS junior Lyndee Hyatt said.
"I was very inspired, and I'm sure the rest of our school was, and I hope that they were, because our parking lot is pretty crazy," FMHS sophomore Katie Vidmar added.
Even though this part of Presnell's journey started out in a car, students were still able to take his accident and tie it in with an even bigger message of respecting others.
"I want it to just be inside of them like love and hate. I just want them to respect other people and respect themselves," Presnell said.
"We don't really get life messages sometimes, and I really felt like that was good and he really hit the spot for teenagers," Lucero said.
But it wasn't always like that. Presnell says his high school years were lonely following his accident.
"[People] like to be around who we relate with, and when someone is that hurt, they don't relate with too many people," he said.
But you'd never know it today. Presnell was surrounded by students following his presentation who wanted to thank him, get an autograph or take a picture.
"He was very funny and I think he had all of our attentions," Vidmar said.
Sharing his story has benefited students as a whole, and now Presnell is giving students new goals.
Respect life, I'm preaching it from my soul.... Reminded everyday that he lost it and hit the pole.
Presnell wanted to thank AAA and CDOT for bringing him to Colorado. Learn more about Presnell at www.TylerPresnell.org.
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