Before TBI: Part Four
Mike was 50 on the date of his accident. He is in a long term marriage with two kids, three grandkids and has a good job before TBI. His wife explains about his life before the wreck and before TBI:
He is a truck driver. He works hard. When he’s not working, we camp and we fish, ride motorcycles. We used to do that. We have our grandson, you know, they come and visit and spend the night.
How old were your children?
They were 21 and 25 at that point in September. Our daughter is the 25 year old and our son is the 21 year old.
What type of truck driver before TBI?
He hauled wood in the wood industry, a logger.
Is that an 18-wheeler?
Yeah, mm hmm. Home every night.
How many years had he been doing that before TBI?
Probably 15 years.
How long have you been married?
27 years next week.
Do you have a job?
I did have a job. I lost it three weeks prior to this. I was a quality auditor in a decorative trim business that did aluminum and plastic decorator knobs. I got hurt at work and used up all my medical leave and they got rid of me.
You live out in the kind of place that you had a four wheeler to use with yard work?
We had it, yeah, we did yard work with it and you can drive them, actually, on our township roads. Our house, we live in a ranch style house. We’ve lived there 15 years. Mike actually built it.
Is it out in the country?
We live about five miles from the nearest town. And it’s a country-type living. We have an acre and a third there. We live in a red-pine plantation, there’s about 500 of ’em. It is gorgeous. Deer and turkey and bear once in a while.
How would you describe your life before TBI?
Pretty much perfect. You know, we worked hard and we paid our bills. We had a lot of, have a lot of things, a camper, and four-wheeler and five acres up at camp and a fishing boat. You know, I worked hard, he worked hard for all of our marriage, and we had a good relationship.
Tell me about a typical weekend camping or vacationing.
A weekend camping, we would pack our bags. Camp was only 30 miles from home, so we could just pretty much pick up and go at any time and we didn’t need to have groceries because there was a store that was like 15 miles from there. So we could pick up whatever we wanted and we’d go there. We’d get there and he would unlock the gate, and it’s like, oh, this is so beautiful. And it was peace and quiet, and no phones and no traffic and no noise.
And you know, just the wilderness and, we’d have a campfire and grill out and cook some food and just have good conversation. Just enjoy it and then sleep in in the morning and look out the window and see if there was any wild creatures in the area.
Mike adds this to the picture of him before TBI:
I would get up in the morning and drive my truck all through the woods, semi, off to the woods and I’d load out of the piles in the woods and I’d take it to, you know, somewhere where they made paper.
My kids: I got a daughter and a son that I love very much.