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Old    Seahawks #1 Fan Robert T (cwb4me)      Join Date: Apr 2010       07-07-2014, 4:47 AM Reply   
Brad Smeele had a terrible wake boarding accident while attempting a triple flip wake boarding. It has been reported that he has a broken 4th vertebra in his neck and has no feeling from the neck down. Doctors are going to do surgery and hopefully repair the damage. Prayers go out to Brad and his family. Praying for a full recovery.
Old    Jim Fergus (jfergus7)      Join Date: Jul 2011       07-07-2014, 5:08 AM Reply   
I heard that too. That totally sucks. Praying for a speedy recovery!
Old    Tim (dezul)      Join Date: Jul 2012       07-07-2014, 5:38 AM Reply   
http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/top-...in-usa-6021289

I hope he has a speedy recovery.
Old    C.I.E. J-Rod (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       07-07-2014, 7:18 AM Reply   
I heard about this yesterday. I also heard it was ramp to ramp. Let's all cross our fingers and pray that the paralysis is temporary.

Incidentally, I saw on Trevor Hansen's page that Matt Manzari was in a serious accident unrelated to Wakeskating, and is also in the hospital suffering from electrocution and burns. So hope and pray for him and his family as well.
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       07-07-2014, 7:45 AM Reply   
I heard about this, major bummer, I also was told it was ramp to ramp.

Here's a quick write up and a place to donate for medical expenses.

http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/top-...in-usa-6021289
Old    John Page (JohnP)      Join Date: Mar 2012       07-07-2014, 7:50 AM Reply   
Here is the direct link to donate to help Brad out!
https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/bradsmeele
Old    L W (501s)      Join Date: Feb 2010       07-07-2014, 8:06 AM Reply   
Wow, that's so awful. That must be so scary for him.
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       07-07-2014, 10:38 AM Reply   
From Jeff Weatherall facebook:

Heres an UPDATE for everyone on Brad Smeele.

I arrived in orlando early this am and thanks to Harley have some wheels and a place to crash.

I managed to make it into the ICU and spend an hour with BRAD before his surgery.

At this point he's doing much better than I expected He has gone in for surgery at 11.30am and it is expected that he will be in there for 6-7 hours

We only know that he has a spinal injury at this point. We don't and won't know the full out come for a little bit yet.

I know a lot of people have asked about coming to visit or finding address's to send gifts.

At this stage we are asking everyone to just hold up on that while he is still in the ICU.

I know once he's out and starting to feel much better that he will really need and want that support then. We will let you know when that time comes.

He has amazing surgeons looking after him and even the RED BULL doctors from the Wings for Life unit have been involved in helping out with his situation…

Keep those good vibes and prayers coming

and I will keep everyone updated as we find out more.

Thank you all so much for your love and support for brad… It really goes to show how far and wide around the world that crazy kiwi has had a positive effect — with Dean Smith and 6 others.
Old    Charlie Zulu (Pad1Tai)      Join Date: Jan 2013       07-07-2014, 4:08 PM Reply   
Prayers are with Brad and his family... Medical advancements have come a long way on spinal injuries... Hoping and praying his C4 and spinal can be repaired successfully.. Is there any info on how the accident occurred? maybe a vid?
Old    John Anderson (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       07-07-2014, 5:06 PM Reply   
Hoping for good news that his surgery goes well.
Old    Chris Jobil (cjobil43)      Join Date: Dec 2013       07-08-2014, 12:00 AM Reply   
It may just be on my side of things, but none of these donation links have been working for me all day.
Old    Charlie Zulu (Pad1Tai)      Join Date: Jan 2013       07-08-2014, 6:01 AM Reply   
Brad's surgery goes well...
http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/other-s...NZ-wakeboarder
Old    Orion (chillinoj)      Join Date: May 2009       07-08-2014, 6:49 AM Reply   
That's a good start, hoping to hear more good news as this goes forward. Good luck Brad!
Old    Niall Duggan (looktodskies)      Join Date: Jun 2014       07-08-2014, 8:02 AM Reply   
can anyone explain what he was trying to do? has it ever been done before?

heart goes out to him and his family. hope he makes a full recovery.
Old     (Bam6961)      Join Date: Apr 2011       07-08-2014, 8:59 AM Reply   
i heard it was either a double tantrum to blind or a triple flip off the mega ramp at lake ronix

the double tantrum to blind he has landed before, its on parks bonifay's instagram.
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       07-08-2014, 5:29 PM Reply   
Update on Facebook. 1-2% chance of regaining motor skills to the top half of his body. Majorly awful. Very sad. I hope he is able to fight through and still live a fulfilling life going forward.
Old    Miguel (migs)      Join Date: Aug 2006       07-08-2014, 7:27 PM Reply   
Sending thoughts & prayers his way. This is horrible news to a fellow rider.
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       07-08-2014, 7:32 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bam6961 View Post
i heard it was either a double tantrum to blind or a triple flip off the mega ramp at lake ronix

the double tantrum to blind he has landed before, its on parks bonifay's instagram.

That wasn't a video of the accident that caused the injury as far as I can tell. That video was from red bull rising.
Old     (Bam6961)      Join Date: Apr 2011       07-08-2014, 10:24 PM Reply   
@Tom yes, the video was taken at redbull rising. I was just stating he had landed a double tantrum to blind before and provided were you could see the video for the previous commenter. I wasn't trying to imply a video of the accident.

I wish him the best of luck for recovery.
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       07-09-2014, 3:46 AM Reply   
Oh ok misunderstood ya
Old    Bill Montanye (bill)      Join Date: Feb 2001       07-09-2014, 5:38 AM Reply   
Prayers sent, this is a terrible situation and reminds us all that one this sport is fun but can be dangerous and two how precious each day is as life can change in an instant..

get well Bro!
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       07-09-2014, 6:33 AM Reply   
They more I think about this, horrible I feel about it. I would like to know how much of this had to do with the landing ramp. The first time I saw or heard of the landing ramp I immediately though that it was a accident game changer and that it could easily kill someone. I was never a 100% believe in it (landing ramp) being progression that was necessary in this sport, I have the same thoughts on the quarter pipes, they look like spine crushers to me.

None-the-less, prays and good vibes for Brad!
Old    John Ansorge (Ansorge10)      Join Date: Oct 2013       07-09-2014, 6:40 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjobil43 View Post
It may just be on my side of things, but none of these donation links have been working for me all day.

Yeah I have tried a few times and nothing will come up, I feel bad cause I haven't donated but I really want to.
Old    C.I.E. J-Rod (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       07-09-2014, 8:56 AM Reply   
I'm with you Andy. Ramp to ramp seems a little out of our element. I may get used to it, but it always seemed odd that wakeboards were landing on something other than water. I wonder if this incident will affect the future of mega ramp riding.

Best of luck to Brad and everyone effected. I think about this several times a day. Very sad.
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       07-09-2014, 9:24 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by jarrod View Post
I'm with you Andy. Ramp to ramp seems a little out of our element. I may get used to it, but it always seemed odd that wakeboards were landing on something other than water. I wonder if this incident will affect the future of mega ramp riding.

Best of luck to Brad and everyone effected. I think about this several times a day. Very sad.
For me the landing ramp has two things going against it that dont make sense. Having not hit the Mega ramp I might not be 100% on point with this, but they are just observations. First, most when every other sport uses landing ramps to soften the blow of the flat earth on the rider. Snowboarding, skiing, Moto X, Skateboarding all use landing ramps, but they can all still edge, carve, turn and control themselves on the landing ramp. On a wakeboard you would have little to no control our edges dont work outside the water. Secondly the landing ramp is way harder (looking) that water, I have crash hard on rails before and the are not very forgiving. The first time I saw that landing ramp I immediately thought it would break bones if you crash hard enough. Sure there's water running down it and sure it has some type of resin on top of it that, but still I would rather crash into the water. Typical wakeboard injuries are of the popping, pulling, tearing, style not as many breaks as in other sports. Anyway, enough about that.

Much you you Jarrod, this keeps popping into my head over and over again all day long.
Old    Chris Butler (xistential)      Join Date: Jul 2007       07-09-2014, 12:41 PM Reply   
Andy you absolutely nailed it. We have been trying to understand how this happened, now I know. I reckon this will be the end of anymore landing ramps.That seems like an insane idea for wakeboarders. What is the point, is it meant to soften the landing, make it a smooth transition...what exactly??Water gives, wood, ground, concrete......they are all resolutely immovable, the only thing that gives is the object hitting it. I feel so, so sad about what has happened and am thinking and praying for him constantly. It is just so awful.
Old    Bill (Bill_Dad)      Join Date: Apr 2010       07-09-2014, 3:48 PM Reply   
Hi to all,
firstly to Brad our prayers and thoughts are with you and your family in this very tragic time. Brad is surrounded by great people who will help him through his rehab and recovery. He is lucky enough to be involved with the wakeboard industry who will dig deep to help him through this very tough times.
The progression of the sport will not stop, people will try bigger and better ramps, it is human nature. People like Brad who push the sport to the limit and beyond will always exist, without people like this there is no progression.
I am truly saddened by Brads unfortunate accident, my heart goes out to not only him but to his family and friends.
Old    Bryan Hutton (hutton)      Join Date: May 2010       07-09-2014, 6:17 PM Reply   
What happened to Brad is a tragedy. I met Brad when I started riding the mastercraft Junior pro tour. It was my first competition on the mastercraft tour. Little did I know Brad and I would be battling each other for years to come. Through out the summers riding on tour Brad motivated me to get better. He had a powerful style and made every trick look easy. I have always been impressed with his riding and looked to him as one of the guys to beat. The wakeboarding industry defiantly took a hit with Brad being sidelined with this injury. I hope that he will defy the odds and get back on the board. IF anyone can do it, it will be Brad. My thoughts go out to him and his family during the road to recovery.

As far as the "mega ramp" discussion above, I don't think Brad's accident will stop this progression. I don't think Brad would want that. I think if anything this opened our eyes to how dangerous our sport is.This landing ramp is allowing riders to push the sport and do tricks that have never been done. With the step down setup at lake ronix I think the landing ramp is completely necessary. The riders are going so big off the kickers their knees, ankles, and backs are loving the ramp. There is no doubt the ramp is dangerous. That is why this type of obstacle is only hit by the pros who know and respect the danger. Brad respected the danger and that is why he had floating stretchers near by and was wearing a coastguard approved vest.
Old    Chris Butler (xistential)      Join Date: Jul 2007       07-09-2014, 9:37 PM Reply   
Bryan, in all the years of modern wakeboarding this has got to be one of the worst accidents ever. You damage your knees, hurt your back, break bones,get knocked unconscious, how often do riders hit the water and break their neck?? As I said water gives....
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       07-10-2014, 5:51 AM Reply   
I guess one of the things that I am concerned about here is lack of padding. Wakeboarding has never really had much in the way of safety gear, since we wouldn't benefit from it much with water contact. And I doubt it would have helped this spinal injury, but I can't help to feel as though, with the introduction of large obstacles in wakeboarding, that the industry is acting A LITTLE irresponsibly by not wearing at least elbow and knee padding.

If you were to go that big on a dirt bike, you would be wearing a lot more than just some flimsy skateboard helmet.

I doubt it would have saved Brad's neck injury, but I can't believe it when I see guys hitting HUGE obstacles with nothing on. I understand adrenaline sports and accepting risk, but it sets a bad example. And I'm not suggesting that we put everyone in a suit of armor, but the industry should start thinking about it at some level.
Old    Adam Van Dyke (lfadam)      Join Date: Nov 2008       07-10-2014, 7:00 AM Reply   
This was a tragic accident. Chris, didn't Corey Kraut break his neck (and unfortunately pass away) from just hitting water? Tragic accidents happen. Let's not scrutinize or overanalyze landing ramps or question the progression of the sport. That's not important right now, we should focus on supporting Brad.
Old    Henry Gates (captain_vilfo)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-10-2014, 7:13 AM Reply   
Prayers for Brad, what a terrible accident. First time I ever heard of him was in a wakeboard mag about 6 years ago where they had a two page action shot of him pulling a ts 1080, immediately became a fan upon seeing that.

I've always thought the mega ramp (and quarter pipes) were pretty cool and added a unique side to our already unique sport, although I understand both side to the argument.

With all that being said, what is Park's instagram name? I tried searching for it and had no success.
Old    Tom (boardjnky4)      Join Date: Dec 2011       07-10-2014, 7:16 AM Reply   
Parxxx
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       07-10-2014, 7:23 AM Reply   
Hillary didn't make it off Everest and he is still a hero. The latest videos of Brad on the mega ramp have been insane. A double tantrum to blind is like something off of Shaun Murray's Xbox game.

Thank you for testing the boundaries of the our sport. I have nothing but respect, prayers and well wishes for your recovery.
Old    Chris Butler (xistential)      Join Date: Jul 2007       07-10-2014, 10:31 AM Reply   
You are right the, ramp discussion is for another time. I feel saddened beyond words by what has happened. The nature of life is that we eventually move as events become memories but Brad and his family have such an unbelievably difficult road ahead as the repercussions of the tragedy will be with them every day. I hope the support continues & continues..... The donation page needs to stay up permanently so people can continue to give as long as it is needed. We have pledged to do this and people I know from all over the world are praying for him. Much love....
Old    Eric Roberts (ers906)      Join Date: Feb 2010       07-10-2014, 10:48 AM Reply   
Like most of us on wake world, I do not know Brad. And after reading the article on the home page, I feel like it is truly my loss in not knowing him. He sounds like a man of character, inner strength and a devotion and love of the sport that most of us take for granted. While we argue regarding which boat manufacturer and gear company is better, Brad worked to develop and push the limits to what we consider possible on a wakeboard. Please donate to the Givealittle charity under Brad Smeele's name. Although the website had some glitches initially, it is now up and running. A significant amount of money has been raised already, however, much more will be needed during his recovery. Based on what I have read about this young man, he will recover, and be able to rejoin us out in the water in some capacity.
Old    Dave O (wakedaveup)      Join Date: May 2012       07-10-2014, 11:25 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by xistential View Post
Bryan, in all the years of modern wakeboarding this has got to be one of the worst accidents ever. You damage your knees, hurt your back, break bones,get knocked unconscious, how often do riders hit the water and break their neck?? As I said water gives....
Chris, not wearing a life jacket can be just as dangerous as this landing ramp. Good Cory Kraught (spelling?) and look at his story. He was an inspirational rider just like Brad who pushed the boundaries of our sport. Unfortunately Cory picked the wrong day to go out without a vest and his life was taken. At the end of the day bad things happen to good people and all we can do is support them and their family in this time of need. As far as the mega ramp being taken out of wakeboarding, that will not happen, and I'm confident that Brad would not want that.
Old    Chris Butler (xistential)      Join Date: Jul 2007       07-10-2014, 12:28 PM Reply   
Dave, as I said I feel saddened beyond belief by what has happened and the ramp discussion is for another time. I am sorry I commented on it initially. ALL that matters here is Brad and his family. I do feel though that EVERY day is the wrong day to ride without a vest.
Old    Mase (superair502)      Join Date: Mar 2010       07-10-2014, 1:29 PM Reply   
I can relate to the fear of a neck injury also and it was the scariest thing that ever happened to me in my life that I wouldn't wish on anyone. It is truly crazy the margin between severe injury and not. I fractured my C6 on my backyard trampoline 2 years ago and was very lucky it fractured in place and did not shift, the doctor told me I had a 3% chance of that happening the way I fell and it broke. I really hope he gets this lucky as well and makes a big recovery.

I got to ride with brad a couple years back and I was truly blown away as at that time I had not heard much about him and he was quite possibly the most impressive rider and most stylish I had seen in person. He was a really cool guy too, I remember going to pick up my truck after riding and saw all his sponsorship stickers peppered all over my vehicle and him giggling as he was putting them on random cars in the parking lot.

My prayers for your recovery man!

Last edited by superair502; 07-10-2014 at 1:31 PM. Reason: spelling
Old    RileyBangerter (steezyshots)      Join Date: Feb 2008       07-11-2014, 9:33 AM Reply   
www.bradsmeelefoundation.com

Brad is an awesome dude that I have been lucky enough to cross paths with! Give 5 or 10 bucks and help him out. Go to the foundation page and click the paypal link!
Old    Matt (Rad_Matty_D)      Join Date: Jun 2011       07-11-2014, 10:57 AM Reply   
It is truly awesome to see the entire wakeboard community coming together to help Brad out. I've never met him but donated what I could. I hope nothing but the best for the guy and I read he has feeling from the nips up!

This injury reminds me a lot of Eric LeGrand- that Rutgers football player that also suffered a similar injury. In both cases they both needed the help of a ventilator to breath but Eric overcame the need for that in a matter of weeks/months. I really hope it ends better for Brad.
Old    kevinkasey (kkasey)      Join Date: Nov 2006       07-11-2014, 12:12 PM Reply   
Hated to hear the news of this young man and his accident. This sport is hard enough on the body going wtw without introducing bigger and more dangerous obstacles. The water itself can cause enough damage as I've watched my oldest snap a femur , fracture a tibia and fracture some vertebrae. All in his desire to become a better rider and progress. He's happy now w doing what he can do and having fun at it but no longer chasing after progression . I wish Brad the best in his recovery and hope this doesn't happen again. This sport is too young to have these types of things happen.
Old    Bwake (bwake)      Join Date: Sep 2009       07-13-2014, 12:47 AM Reply   
Pretty interesting take on the life of a pro wakeboarder. (Italics)

http://www.alliancewake.com/wake/staystrongbrad/

Hope he progresses well and his family manage to get him good treatment in the US or back in NZ
Old    Chris Butler (xistential)      Join Date: Jul 2007       07-16-2014, 10:45 AM Reply   
Anyone know how much money was raised last night or what the vibe & turnout was like?
Old    Charlie Zulu (Pad1Tai)      Join Date: Jan 2013       07-16-2014, 11:13 AM Reply   
It was $90k a couple of days ago.. https://www.facebook.com/bradsmeelesrecovery
Old    Baitkiller (baitkiller)      Join Date: Jan 2010       07-17-2014, 10:05 AM Reply   
Does anyone know where to buy the stickers?
Old    Josh Robinson (sideswipeproductions)      Join Date: Jun 2009       07-17-2014, 9:52 PM Reply   
I'm not entirely sure where you can purchase the #staystongbrad stickers at the moment, however I know that UNIT Parktech just put these "I Ride 4 Brad" stickers online and that they'll double the amount going straight to the Brad Smeele Foundation with every purchase.

The last couple of weeks have been a really rough time and the outpouring of love from the wake community and beyond has been really heartwarming.

http://www.unit-parktech.com/shop/#i...4-brad-sticker

Old    Bevan (stxr_racer)      Join Date: Jun 2006       09-14-2014, 5:56 PM Reply   
In case you missed it, here's the link to last nights NZ TV show on Brad Smeele's accident and recovery process, and update on his latest condition. Cheers.
http://tvnz.co.nz/sunday-news/wake-b...-video-6080189
Old    Miguel (migs)      Join Date: Aug 2006       09-14-2014, 6:26 PM Reply   
Thanks Bevan
Old    Bwake (bwake)      Join Date: Sep 2009       Yesterday, 3:02 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
Hillary didn't make it off Everest and he is still a hero. .
Sorry mate, Hillary definitely made it off. He died in Auckland, NZ a few years back.
Old    Justin Harrelson (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       Yesterday, 7:13 AM Reply   
You are right. I ment Mallory. I was trying to make the NZ hero connection, but got my mountaineers mixed up.
Old    Kevin Zoodsma (zoodsmak)      Join Date: Feb 2009       Yesterday, 9:21 AM Reply   
Stickers are available at http://www.wakehouse.com/products/st...rad-decal.html with proceeds going to the Brad Smeele foundation.

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