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Memorial Hermann The Woodlands hosts National Trauma Survivors Day Celebration

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In honor of National Trauma Survivors Day on May 15, 2024, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center hosted a celebration to honor and bring together Trauma Survivors, their loved loves, EMS, and Trauma Center Staff.

View photos from the celebration on the Hello Woodlands Facebook page:


National Trauma Survivors Day

11 Trauma Survivors were honored during the celebration’s program that included a welcome by Melanie Bradshaw, MSN, RN, Trauma Survivorship Coordinator, blessing by Denise Martin, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, Trauma Program & Emergency Department Director, and introduction by Timothy Hodges, M.D., Trauma Medical Doctor. Four survivors – two motorcycle crash survivors, one automobile crash survivor, and one ladder accident survivor – each shared their story of overcoming tragedy, recovery, and gratitude to all that helped walk through their journey of healing – physically, mentally, and emotionally. A meet and greet followed the program, allowing trauma survivors to connect with the EMS teams and Health Care Professionals that helped save their lives.

Surviving a traumatic injury can be challenging, not only physically, but emotionally. Survivors may feel alone and struggling with what the future holds. The Trauma Survivorship Program at Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center offers free resources that allow survivors to share their stories and challenges with others who have had similar experiences, while learning powerful skills for coping and navigating their new lives post injury. Memorial Hermann offers a monthly, virtual support group for survivors, the ability to connect with a “peer survivor/mentor,” a monthly newsletter, and referral to a wide variety of resources both locally and nationally.

Bethany’s Story

Hello Woodlands had the opportunity to talk with Bethany Levrier, a trauma survivor after being critically injured in a horrific car crash on November 2, 2021. Bethany was driving home from dinner with her 14-month-old son when a driver crossed a double yellow line, went airborne, and landed on top of her car. Bethany was critically injured, but thankfully her son had been properly secured in an infant seat, didn’t have a scratch.

Bethany Levrier, a trauma survivor after being critically injured in a horrific car crash on November 2, 2021, shares her story of recovery at the National Trauma Survivor Day Celebration 2024; Photo by Rod Prado.

Both Bethany and her son were taken by ambulance to Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center, a Level II Trauma Center, where doctors confirmed she was bleeding internally and had broken nearly every bone from the waist down. Bethany was in a coma for nearly three weeks and remained in the ICU for more than two months before being moved to TIRR Memorial Hermann in The Woodlands for intensive therapy. In all, she’s had more than 30 surgical procedures and nearly three years of intermittent physical therapy to learn to walk again.

Bethany attended and spoke at the National Trauma Survivors Day Celebration, sharing that this was her second year back. “Y’all are the reason I came back today and y’all are the reason why I’m here…Your joy and approach to your patients helps us more than you know. Every smile, asking how our day was. It shifts our mindset. I don’t think I can put into words how much you mean to me.”

Bethany shared the road to recovery has been very long – ICU, inpatient rehab, years of outpatient rehab, learning how to do everything again – and one of the hardest parts was limited interactions with her son. It was not until recently that Bethany has been able to hold him in her arms while walking or do simple things like play in the front yard. This was the first Mother’s Day that she was able to walk unassisted since the accident.

What would Bethany say to someone who is starting/going through their recovery journey as a trauma survivor?

“One of the biggest things I could say to someone that might be of some encouragement is to remember how differently things could have been. Good or Bad. You never know what else someone could be going through. I focused my recovery on being intentional – at least in the hospital setting – with my gratitude and thankfulness and tried really hard not to get in a negative headspace and focus on others. And it was a lot easier in the sense that recovery is difficult. But it was easier when I was focused more on gratitude and being thankful, and being appreciative for anyone else who helped me in my journey. I don’t know what it’s like for them – my background is not in the medical field – and when I focused on thankfulness I feel like I was able to accomplish more in that positive headspace. It’s really hard to always focus on others when you’re trying to learn how to do things differently than you did before. I have limitations that I didn’t have before, I have to learn how to move differently. So that’s still really hard how to figure out, how to do things differently than I used to be able to do things, but I constantly have to check myself. Don’t compare to what was before because you’re here now. Things might be different, but you’re here. You’re here.”

What was it like going through recovery at Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center?

“Everyone approached their job with the same excitement. Everyone brought the same energy to the table, in different ways. It’s going to sound funny but everyone that I saw whether they were PT, an OT, Speech, a Doctor, a Nurse, a Nurse Practitioner, they were exactly who I needed to see at that moment. Whether it was just their personality, their professionalism, their manner in which they presented information or ideas, or hard truths that I needed to hear about my health and my situation. Everything was exactly what I needed in that moment. Everyone brought something different and I value each and every one of them for just who they were and how they approached their job. It’s a hard thing to be so compassionate, caring, and loving day in and day out, all day, every day nonstop and bring that to your job. I love Memorial Hermann. I love TIRR. I had such a great experience across the board. It’s not something I would want to experience, but I am so glad that I had the experience I had. I feel like these people are my family and I feel like we are bonded for life in a way that most people aren’t. I will forever remember them and everything they do for me.”

What’s next? What is Bethany celebrating now in her journey?

“Well, we are gearing up to put my son in school next year. He is my only child, so I’m going to get ready for my new phase in parenting. Like everyone else I have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m excited and trying to get ready for that. I’m celebrating even though it’s going to be super hard. I’m going to bawl my eyes out on his first day of school, but I get to be here for that. If I hadn’t come here [to Memorial Hermann], I probably wouldn’t. In my accident, my stats began to drop in the middle of transport, so if they hadn’t brought me here I don’t know if I would have made it.”

In addition to her medical team, family and friends, Bethany shared that Memorial Hermann’s Trauma Survivor Support Group has been instrumental in her recovery. Open to any trauma survivor no matter where they were treated, the support group provides a safe place where trauma patients heal through speaking about their trauma and managing stressors, like the anniversary of their accidents. The group meets virtually on the third Thursday of each month.

National Trauma Survivors Day Memorial Hermann 2024
Trauma Survivors and Memorial Hermann representatives gathered on the Lifeflight Helipad to honor National Trauma Survivors Day on the morning of May 15, 2024. Photo courtesy of Memorial Hernmann

To learn more about Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center’s Trauma Survivorship Program or injury prevention resources, contact Melanie Bradshaw at or visit