Local News

Injured Capitol Police Officer Defies Odds, Wants To Return To Work

Posted September 28, 2000 7:00 a.m. EDT

— Less than three months after the accident that nearly cost him his life, Capitol police officer Brandon Bradshaw is looking forward to returning to work. A benefit luncheon was held in his honor Friday at Bicentennial Plaza in downtown Raleigh.

On July 20, Bradshaw was driving east on Jones Street in Raleigh when police say Roland Jerome Bynum ran a red light, broadsided his cruiser and nearly killed him.

Bradshaw says he does not remember that day, but he says he will not soon forget all the support he has received from the community.

"All the cards from total strangers. It's very encouraging," Bradshaw says. "I guess that's what gave me the strength to go on, that and the good Lord."

Bradshaw's brain injury left him unable to talk eat or walk. He spent weeks atWakeMed'sRehabilitation Hospital. His doctor says his recovery was nothing short of remarkable.

"He's made very quick gains over the past six weeks," says Dr. Patrick O'Brien. "He's much stronger. All the weakness in his arms and legs is resolved."

Bradshaw is unsure when he will be able to return to work -- but those who know him say, with his determination, anything is possible.

"I told him he's an angel," says Michelle Lynch, Bradshaw's friend. "He has to be. Things like that just don't happen every day."

Bradshaw says he should be back in another three or four months.

"I've come so far so fast. I don't expect to stop here," he says.

Bradshaw just finished a big part of his rehab treatment this week. He can run and jump now -- something no one expected him to be able to do this soon.

With the type of severe brain injury he sustained, patients usually take up to a year to make that kind of progress.