This is Riley's story.Riley Inge is one of over 2,000 participants in the Rick Hansen Spinal Cord Injury Registry. Riley provides information about his injury which the Registry uses for its work in translational research. The aim of this research is to seek breakthroughs in acute care, rehabilitation, and community integration through facilitating communication, promoting best practices, and partnering with communities.
My name is Riley Inge. I was born in a small southern town in Eutaw, Alabama on September 26, 1949. I had a large family with seven siblings who all still reside in the States. I am a professional singer, songwriter, vocal coach, actor, public speaker and the father of four beautiful children. I’ve been fortunate enough to earn a living as an entertainer over the past 37 years.
On August 27, 2010 my life changed. I was at an amusement park with my fiancée who suggested we take on ride on the roller coaster. Before the ride was over, I was paralyzed from the neck down. My injury completely changed my life. Nothing is the same as it was before the accident and, at this point, we don’t know if it ever will be. I’ve had to learn how to walk again, how to hold a fork and spoon, how to eat properly, and how to take care of myself overall. All of my mobility skills went away from me.
I’ve had to work hard in order to regain some normality in my everyday life. My awakening has been amazing as to the kinds of people I’ve met at GF Strong [Rehabilitation Centre] who have had various unfortunate incidents happen, and how they’ve coped. Thank God for GF Strong and the Rick Hansen Institute or I don’t know where I’d be today.
I wanted to participate [in the Registry] because I see this as an opportunity to maybe make a difference in others lives. Through my experience I hope to enlighten and inspire others to not give up and let the hope be drained from them. There are many things we all can do to make a difference. I am but one voice with a multitude of melodies that flows from my determination.
About the Rick Hansen SCI Registry
Rick Hansen SCI Registry is a pan-Canadian prospective observational registry of individuals sustaining a traumatic spinal cord injury at 31 major Canadian acute care and rehabilitation hospitals. The Registry was initiated as a research study sponsored by the Rick Hansen Institute and was developed to collect data on individuals who sustain traumatic spinal cord injuries and link clinicians, researchers, and health care administrators with the goal of improving both research and clinical practice for individuals with SCI by facilitating the translation of research into clinical practice and promotion of evidence-based practices.
Across Canada, the Registry is collecting comprehensive SCI data for the purpose of improving SCI care and clinical outcomes. The Registry promotes, encourages and supports the pursuit of excellence in SCI health care management.