Message Boards

Topic : 07/29 "I Survived!" Caught on Camera

Number of Replies: 46
New Messages This Week: 0
Last Reply On:
Created on : Friday, November 21, 2008, 12:47:03 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 11/28/08) "I Survived!" Caught on Camera In the blink of an eye, your life can change. It doesn't matter how much money or success you have, there is no guarantee of a tragedy-free life. Dr. Phil's guests know this all too well -- they survived the unthinkable. Spencer was a high school football player who dreamed of playing college ball when an ordinary football game became his worst nightmare. See the play that nearly cost him his life. Now Spencer struggles to deal with his life-changing injury and the end of his dream. Then, Darren was a cameraman working the job of a lifetime: filming the 2008 Beijing Olympics. What began as a beautiful day visiting the Great Wall of China turned ugly in an instant when Darren was struck by lightning. Darren says he recognizes that he has a second chance at life, but doesn't know how to make sense of it. And, see dramatic footage captured by a man capsized at sea during a powerful storm. Believing he would die, Dom recorded his ordeal with his waterproof video camera. See these amazing stories caught on tape and examine how you would cope with a life-changing event. Are you prepared to handle a crisis? Share your thoughts, join the discussion.

Find out what happened on the show.

As of January, 2009, this message board will become "Read Only" and will be closed to further posting. Please join the NEW Dr. Phil Community to continue your discussions, personalize your message board experience, start a blog and meet new friends.

November 21, 2008, 5:02 pm CST

Doctor Phil Show.

Camera Caught Doctor I On Phil Survived. Well Well Well here go again. Anothern round of this show. How

was your Day Happy Thanksgivings? See you on Friday November 28th, 2008. Sincerley Your. Russell-----


November 22, 2008, 12:29 pm CST

:I survived"

    I have learned over the years-after having a major chronic illness, two major car accidents, being stalked by a stranger and having my home broken into three times while I was home- that one NEVER knows what the day is going to bring. If we survive the day, then there may be a lesson we need to learn about life. Everyday I check in with myself to see if I would have any regrets about my life if I died today. The answer is usually "no". If  I have a "yes" day, then I try to do something about that "regret". Life is short and attitude is everything.
November 22, 2008, 12:37 pm CST

We are all survivors.

In my 58 years of life I have survived storms at sea, a young divorce, childbirth (4 times), having a child with Down Syndrome, my daughters' eating disorders and the breakdown of my second marriage when I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007.    Being grateful for each and every challenge life throws at us is the only way to walk ahead with head held high and hope for the future.  I hope your programme will emphasize the positive nature of extreme challenges that are visited on us all.  It is also important to emphasize that doing so with grace is merely the cherry on the cake.  I am a fan.
November 22, 2008, 5:23 pm CST

I am amazed!!!

I can't wait to watch this one!  I personally haven't overcome any adversities.  I am almost 28 and have lived with CP since I was two months old.  Needless to say, I've never known life without CP, so it's a just a "way of life" for me for lack of better words.  How do people do it that are perfectly normal almost their whole life, then have something permenantly change them forever?  I admire people who take their tradgedy and turn it into triumph.  One of my favorite saying is "That which doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!"  Godspeed to you all!
November 22, 2008, 8:39 pm CST

brain injury

I went on a roller coaster ride Labor
day of 2004, suffered a brain injury, had emergency surgery, was told I would need to learn to talk and walk, etc. again (if at all). I made my own sunshine, and continue to do so, by working on cognitive things constantly and (physically) have returned to SCUBA diving, motorcycle riding, downhill skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking. Drs. seemed to be glad I made it through the surgery and followup was nothing. Everyday is work, but worth it. I still have times when I have meltdowns and I never know when to expect them. I have no idea why I survived, but am still making hay! It is an ongoing journey.
November 27, 2008, 4:38 pm CST

Depression after an accident

I experienced a car accident that drastically changed my life.  The worst part about it for me is not the physical pain I still experience, but the frustration of losing the independence I once had (I was very independent and self-sufficient with the "I don't need anybody for anything attitude.)  I have only recently been able to allow people to help me and not get offended when they tell me I shouldn't do something.  People are well meaning and their concern comes from caring.  It's a hard thing to accept and is still a humbling experience.  Everyone needs someone.  I won't make that mistake again.
November 28, 2008, 7:06 am CST

Note To Spencer


Keep on working on trying to get back to the good ole Spencer. You can do it. I will be tough and sometimes lonely, but with hard work and a positive mind, you can do it. Your success in sports, your real friends and your family will be your guide. I had a career-altering knee injury back when I was 13 so I can understand some of the journey your are now embarking on. I am 47 years old now.


Knee injury at 13. No more football and I was really good at it. Switched to basketball. People told me I could not do it. I ended up being on a state championship team in HS and going to college on a full scholarship and started at point guard. People called me crip and said I would never play basketball again. Thru hard work and a belief in myself,I proved them wrong, but moreover, I proved something to myself. You can do the same. The most important thing in my opinion is to continue to dream. Don't stop dreaming or trying to realize your dreams. Playing pro football is only one dream. Don't be so bitter that you stop dreaming. There are many dreams that you can make come true. Believe that and you will make it happen.


One of my motivational movies was called Brian's Song. I identified directly with Gale Sayers because of the journey back that he had to make. I saw him at a conference for the first time. It was too emotional for me to tell him my story, so I just looked at him and thought to myself, what an inspiration to me he was and he doesn't even know it. I recently (after all this time), made a photo him my computer desktop photo, so I see his image when my computer comes on. People ask me why I have that photo as he is long retired. For me, his symbol is much more than that of a football player. I think of him when times are tough. Just like I did when I was rehabing my injury. Believe me, the rehab was mental and physical and painful but worth every minute.


My favorite poem is something you can find on the internet called "Don't Quit". My basketball coach used to make us say it EVERYDAY after practice. Every team member had to KNOW it and SAY it. It means alot to me and I refer to it even to this day. We ended up losing our first game, then won 27 in a row and became state champions. If I had quit right after the injury, I would have never experienced that.


I have seen guys end their sports careers and stop dreaming completely. I have seen others careers come to an end and then dream something else and pursue it. Here is an example. One guy was great in sports (football, basketball, and baseball). When that ended due to a neck injury, he wanted to stay associated with sports and ended up being a sports agent. How close to football is that, plus he makes money representing top athletes. He goes to any games he wants to. Man, I should have dreamed like that. See what I mean?


If you love sports, brainstorm careers that are associated with sports and pursue it. That way, you can be around something you love and possibly make money at it. When my college career was over and it didn't seem like I would become a pro, I was disappointed. I moved away from sports and shifted my time toward a career. Toss up was between physical therapy and computer science. Coin came up computer science. I had never touched a computer before, but I went for it. Been doing it ever since. Even started my own business. I approached the whole thing like a challenge. Going for new business is challenging just like trying to prepare and win a game. Know what I'm talking about.


I often think about moving away from sports and wonder if I should have. I go to games and offer advice to kids, but never lived it everyday like I once did. Other things to do. It's a balance and I do not regret my decision because I found other things to enjoy. Still enjoy going to games and I play a little. Fun but will never be the same. Now I have fun just exercising and playng with friends


When I saw friends make it to the pros (Dominique Wilkins, Sam Perkins were H.S. teammates of mine), I often wonder what would have happened if I had not gotten injured. Could I have gone further in sports? Would I have made it as a football player? I think about it, but it is only a passing thought. Not a consuming or depressing thought. Hell, I wonder if I should have been a Dr. (smile).


All I can tell you is unpredictable things happen in life. You have to have the mental toughness to face it. Your mental and physical training will help you the rest of your life. The people who never had that training will not understand what I am saying to you, but you know what I am talking about. It will take time but you can do it. Just continue to work hard, have faith in yourself, pray for strength and as time passes, new doors will open for you. Watch and see what happens. Life is amazing as long as you stay positive, work hard and believe in yourself!


Good luck in your life! You deserve it!



November 28, 2008, 8:17 am CST

11/28 "I Survived!" Caught on Camera

For Spencer and Family,


I hope you all realize, first of all how special Spencer is. I was impressed with his sense of being a team player, and his drive to stay in the game. Now personally I know very little about football, but I know a lot about life, and that kind of spirit will make him a good employee, a good friend, a good spouce and a good father someday. If he can apply that to the rest of his life, and choose his afiliations wisely, then the world is his oyster. I think there are so many situations in life where an attitude like that is needed. IF he put that effort into some worthwhile cause, or a business, he could make a huge impact on the world.


Because of his intense focus on the team though he needs to pull his focus to a wider view. There is so much out there besides football. This is a rough time for many people in this world. The world is in need of people with determination, a clear head, a good work ethic, and a sense of team. I think Spencer could do something with his life that would just dwarf football. Perhaps one door has closed for Spencer, but perhaps there is a reason for that. When God closes a door, he always opens another so that the person is gentlyh guided into another direction. Maybe it was just time to change direction and focus, but in the end, I am sure that if you keep an open mind, and look for an opportunity, "Spencer will go far in life.



November 28, 2008, 9:05 am CST


I believe we are all survivors in one way or another. We are here for a reason and have the ability to use our disabilities in ways that you may not have been able to prior to your accident!
Please don't give UP!
As a very special woman (Dana Reeves) once told a very special man (Christopher Reeves), "you're still you"!
That book, on tape, changed my life totally. I recommend you listen to Chris' voice as he tells his story of survival if you haven't already!
You are still YOU and you are someone special!
Best of luck and if you ever need a cheerleader, feel free to contact me!
November 28, 2008, 10:35 am CST

also a survivor

 I've been there also, which is why I posted the previous message. Not just another "cheerleader"!


MONDAY, JULY 25, 2005 12:00 AM   

Injured dancer choreographs own recovery
Woman survives severe spinal injury by letting her spirit, dance training guide her

Of The Post and Courier

As Marka Rodgers twists and flexes her body in dance class, it's difficult to believe she survived a devastating spinal cord injury.
Although she hides it well, Rodgers can't forget the day it happened.

"April 14, 1994, I got up, went to work," she said. At the time, "I had a great kid, a home, a mortgage, an all-American great life, and in a split instant it was all taken away it was changed completely."    

Rodgers was working as an emergency medical technician when a stretcher carrying a large unconscious patient gave way and took her with it. Doctors told her that the accident was equivalent to that of a whiplash injury at 50 mph.    

"I don't remember much of the first few days except the pain, denial, and more pain," Rodgers said. She had crushed part of her spinal cord at the base of her neck. Doctors told Rodgers she should have been paralyzed.    

Like many dance students throughout the years, JoAnn Joyner was intimidated and inspired by Rodgers' talent. "The first few months I knew her, she was my dance teacher. I had no idea she was hurt," Joyner said.    

Rodgers always had been an independent and unique person. "When I was a kid, I didn't fit in to any classic place in society, in school, in dance class or anywhere it seemed," she said.    

Determined to figure out things on her own, Rodgers experimented with all kinds of performance arts, thought about quitting school and moving to New York, and, in the end, committed her mind and body to dance. Little did she know, her passion for dance would save her life.    

After seven years of working in Argentina as a teacher, dancer and choreographer, Rodgers returned to the United States in need of a job and medical insurance for her new son. In 1989, a friend mentioned an opening at the James Island Fire Department. Rodgers first laughed at the idea. When asked "why not," Rodgers could not think of a good answer. She needed the job.    

Soon after she started, Rodgers realized the similarity between performing in the theatre and fighting fire. She loved the adrenaline rush.    

Rodgers' love for physicality, learned in her early dancing years, inspired her to become an emergency medical technician.    

The accident happened only seven months into her job as an emergency medical technician. As she lay in her hospital bed, Rodgers couldn't grasp the severity and reality of her situation. She recognized the seriousness of it all when her doctor told her "if you sneeze you could be a quadriplegic."    

After quickly getting her will in order, Rodgers underwent surgery and started on a long road to recovery. Not only was her body crippled by the accident, but her independence was as well.    

"I was carried to the shower to sit in a plastic chair to be bathed. I would lie in my bed for days on end, barely able to get out, and shuffle to another room only to collapse and cry," Rodgers said.    

During the months after her surgery, Rodgers fell into a severe depression and became suicidal. "Frankly the only reason I never committed suicide is because of my son," Rodgers said. "He is really the reason I am still alive today."    

Rodgers knew that she needed to rebuild herself mentally and physically. After discouraging experiences at physical therapy, Rodgers began her own training program that drew upon her knowledge and passion for dancing. She slowly regained strength by pulling apart silly putty, pointing and flexing her toes, and stretching for hours.    

While training, Rodgers listened to Christopher Reeves' book, Still Me, on tape. She identified with Reeves' voice. It was weak, barely recognizable through the hum of his ventilator, but resilient, like Rodgers' spirit.    

Doctors tell Rodgers that if it weren't for her physical fitness at the time of the injury, and her dance-based training after the surgery, she wouldn't be able to walk today.    

Rodgers trained daily at the MUSC fitness center. "I ended up in a corner, kind of hiding, just doing some of my exercises, stretching and building strength to support my head when one day a man came over to me and asked 'Are you a dancer?' and I responded, 'I used to be,'" Rodgers said.    

Today, Rodgers considers herself a dancer once again. She is a part-time teacher of her own rehabilitation/fitness/movement therapy program at MUSC, and she is a co-creator, alongside Joyner, of a new dance company and studio, "Universal Physicality," or "UP."    

Joyner said she believes that Rodgers is a unique teacher because she can offer something that many teachers can't.    

"She's always been a 'go-er,' I get nervous for her sometimes because she'll go and go and go, and the next day she can't do anything. I wish she didn't have those days," Joyner said.    

"Her injury helps her understand people's wants and struggles. She has such a wide range of life experience, she can relate to anyone," Joyner said.    

Rodgers is inspired to keep going every day by Joyner. The 23-year-old owner/manager of the "UP" studio is not only a former student and lifelong friend, but she is living the dream that Rodgers was never able to.    

With the excitement of the studio opening this week, Rodgers is committed to keeping a positive outlook. "The truth is we choose how to live our lives," Rodgers said, "and I choose to stay up."


The studio nor the dance company exist, but not for lack of trying... We do have limits and learning the boundaries between what we can and what we can't accomplish is part of the process! Hang in there!!!

First Page | Previous Page | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | Next | Last