During a high school football game, Hayden took a bad hit and suffered a severe spinal cord injury. Two of his vertebrae were so damaged they were essentially flipped in place. In need of a Level 1 Trauma Center, Hayden was rushed to Loyola. He underwent an extensive procedure to alleviate the pressure on his spinal cord and correct the damage. After surgery, he was on a ventilator and had a 5% chance of making a full recovery.
Through strength, grit and determination Hayden fought his way back to his normal self. He slowly learned to breathe on his own, regained movement in his limbs and finally started to walk. Hayden is now pursuing his dream of a career in agriculture while working on his family farm: baling hay, feeding cows and driving a tractor. In the fall, Hayden will head off to college to continue his dream. Hayden is our hero. For more information, visit LoyolaMedicine5K.org.