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A Night for Heroes 2013 - Nothing's Going to Break His Stride

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Published on Feb 19, 2013

When Sam Bellett woke up that dark summer morning, his future couldn't have been much brighter.

He had just turned 16 and was a week away from starting his junior year in a rigorous academic program at Mandarin High School. He had recently earned a spot on the cross country team and was on his way to becoming an Eagle Scout, the highest rank in Boy Scouts.

At about 6:15 a.m. Aug. 18, 2011, it all came to an abrupt halt.

Sam was struck by an SUV as he rode his bicycle to cross country practice. His family was told his injuries were life-threatening. He'd been rushed to TraumaOne at Shands Jacksonville Medical Center.

He would spend about three weeks at Shands Jacksonville and another few months in and out of rehabilitation. And Sam would miss that entire first half of his junior year at school.

The worst of Sam's physical wounds would mostly heal, but he was warned things would be different.

A young man who didn't settle for anything was facing a future where he'd be forced to settle for less than his original dreams.

But Sam had different plans.

More information about TraumaOne at UF&Shands Jacksonville at http://ufandshandsjax.org/traumaone/

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