DRS in Action – Music Inspires Us
Vivan “Vi” Wickam was a professional musician whose life changed forever one night in 1995.Vi was headed home from recording a performance on KWGN-TV’s Blinky the Clown show when he nearly died in a horrific car accident. He survived, but suffered a closed brain head injury. As a result of the accident, Vi lost many things dear to him – the ability to manage life, his businesses and family, the ability to play the banjo and sing, the independence that comes with driving a car, and just life as it used to be.
“I became aware of DRS when I rented some medical equipment following the accident,” said Vi. He then learned DRS could assist him with regaining some of his self-sufficiency and independence. “I knew they could help me take responsibility for getting a handle on my life. I was aware that I was missing some skill sets as a result of the closed brain injury. I needed help writing letters, making phone calls, and sorting mail. Things like that.” It wasn’t long before Vi became aware that DRS could assist him in many other ways, including moral and emotional support.
Denise Meyer, the Loveland Program Manager, is Vi’s Independent Living Specialist. With her assistance, Vi continues to receive that personal assistance, plus much more. There’s peer mentoring, Medicaid, LEAP (Low-income Energy Assistance Program) and housing assistance, personal advocacy, referrals to other organizations, and even eyeglasses.
“Denise has a real skill in working with people with closed brain injuries,” says Vi. “Thanks to Denise, I’m continuing to work toward regaining some of my business pursuits.” Vi is so appreciative that this year he nominated Denise for the Judge Conrad L. Ball Award for Significant Contribution to Improving the Quality of Justice in Larimer County. “Thank you, Denise, for your work helping and inspiring people with closed brain injuries in their recovery.”
“I live off inspiration,” says Vi. He remembers being invited as a ten-year-old into the Judge’s home to sing. It helped inspire him to pursue a career in music and helps him keep alive his dream of singing and playing the banjo professionally again. “I want to thank the Judge Ball family for providing an avenue for children to be inspired and pursue higher levels in their professions, whatever they may be.”
Vi has not achieved all his goals. He‘s striving to get his health back and is working toward resuming his career as a singer and musician. DRS and Denise continue to assist Vi in attaining his goals.