Students release balloons in remembrance of traumatic brain injury victims


UK fans celebrate UK’s win over Michigan to go to the Final Four in Lexington, Ky.,on Sunday, March 30, 2014. Photo by Michael Reaves

By Anthony Gaither

[email protected]

Dozens of neon green balloons formed a cluster against the dark blue sky on North Campus Monday night.

Students released balloons into the sky for Traumatic Brain Injury and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder awareness at the Stuckert Career Center.

Members of the Communications Student Association, Alpha Phi, Delta Zeta, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Delta Delta Delta, and Delta Gamma participated in the balloon releasing. The event was promoted by Delta Epsilon Iota.

The students released 110 balloons.

“I recently met someone with a TBI. It’s incredible to see how one person can change your life,” communication sophomore Corbin Bailey said. “We often take the small things for granted and with TBI you have to relearn how to do the small things.”

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, PTSD can be caused by seeing something that’s upsetting or dangerous. PTSD is common among soldiers recently in combat.

Monday’s event was for people who have died and people who are still living with a traumatic brain injury or PTSD.

“Raising awareness is very  important to me,” psychology sophomore Taylor Burkholder said.

Burkholder, whose brother has a traumatic brain injury, said she likes the event because it helps show support.

And Burkholder is not the only participant to have drawn inspiration from someone close to her.

“My friend Mark that has TBI has changed my life forever,” said Bailey, who was also the coordinator of the event. “Every day brings challenges. It’s up to us to turn those obsticales into oppurtunities.”

The main purpose of the event is to help let others know about traumatic brain injuries and PTSD.

“I just wanted to spread awareness and show support to a good cause,”  communication sophomore Jared Klensch said.

March is PTSD and traumatic brain injury awareness month.

Bailey said that since it was the last day of March, he planned to continue working with the groups that came out to this event along with other organizations on campus to continue to raise awareness on these two disorders.