A new start on the mountain that changed his life

Reggie Clark and Jamie MoCrazy were immediately attracted to each other after meeting through a mutual friend in June 2017 at a bar name...

Reggie Clark and Jamie MoCrazy were immediately attracted to each other after meeting through a mutual friend in June 2017 at a bar named Sue near Salt Lake City, where he lived. They bonded over a shared love of the outdoors.

“We quickly made a lot of travel plans,” Mr. Clark said, which he noted was not unusual for him and his friends. The difference this time? “We tracked just about all of them.” This included group excursions like camping, ski touring and mountain biking.

“We watched the solar eclipse atop the tallest mountain in Idaho,” said Ms. MoCrazy, who last November legally changed her last name from Crane-Mauzy to her longtime nickname.

But romance wasn’t on her mind at first. “I immediately put him in the friend zone,” she said.

As their friendship progressed, Ms. MoCrazy, a former professional freestyle skier in slopestyle and halfpipe, shared more about herself, including details of a traumatic brain injury she suffered at following a skiing accident during a competition on April 11, 2015.

As fate would have it, April 11 is also Mr. Clark’s birthday.

‘It was amazing to hear what happened to him,’ said Mr Clark, 30, ‘and I was impressed that the person I had a normal conversation with went through everything TBI related’

Ms MoCrazy, 29, had competed in the World Tour Finals at the World Ski & Snowboard Festival in Whistler, Canada. She was in fourth place after her first race. “I had been ranked first or second overall in slopestyle and halfpipe skiing,” she said.

On her second run, she attempted an off-axis double flip. “I haven’t freaked out enough,” Ms. MoCrazy said. “On landing, I grabbed the edge of my ski, which threw my head into the snow, causing my brain to bleed in eight places. I damaged my right brainstem, which paralyzed my right side.

She was intubated on the mountain before being airlifted to Vancouver General Hospital, where she was hooked up to a brain monitoring device, known as a brain bolt. She remained in a natural coma for 10 days and was hospitalized for a month and a half. Thereafter, she received outpatient therapy five days a week.

She had to relearn everything, from swallowing to walking. She thanks her family – especially her mother, Grace Mauzy – for her recovery.

Beyond the physical challenges, she also faced emotional changes. “I was crying several times a day,” she said. “It was way more difficult than the physical stuff. People don’t recognize cognitive challenges because they are invisible.

Mr Clark said it took him a while to realize that the occasional mood swings he had witnessed were largely attributed to his brain injury. “But I understood that it’s very human to have emotional downturns sometimes,” he said.

About a year into their friendship, in April 2018, Ms MoCrazy said her feelings for Mr Clark were starting to change and she wondered if he felt the same way too. So she decided to test the waters by visiting Mr. Clark at his home in Salt Lake City.

“He was having breakfast,” she said, “and I asked him outright if he had ever thought of kissing me. He responded with a kiss, his mouth still full of mini frosted wheats. .

Their romantic relationship developed rapidly. “We already loved each other so much that our friends had actually bet on how long it would take for us to start dating,” Ms MoCrazy said. And before they officially left the friend zone, she added, “My mom was sure we were in love after we got back from a camping trip with some starry-eyed friends.”

In October, Mr. Clark moved into Ms. MoCrazy’s apartment in Salt Lake City.

Mr Clark said that Ms MoCrazy’s “can-do attitude, willingness to learn, adventurous spirit and genuine kindness attracted me and later made me fall in love with her”. He also called her “super clumsy.”

Ms. MoCrazy, who grew up in Westport, Conn., works as a motivational speaker and director of communications for MoCrazy Strong, the nonprofit group she founded with her mother and sister Jeanee Crane-Mauzy. The group provides peer-to-peer counseling for TBI survivors and family caregivers. She graduated from Westminster College in Salt Lake City with a degree in communications.

Clark, who grew up in Glastonbury, Connecticut, is a Salt Lake City-based operations supervisor for the Curtiss-Wright Corporation, a Davidson, North Carolina-based company that manufactures components for defence, aerospace and energy. Industries. He holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Westminster College and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis.

The couple learned to deal with Ms. MoCrazy’s cognitive challenges together.

To help calm her down, Ms MoCrazy said Mr Clark sometimes quoted her to herself, saying: “‘A great motivational speaker once said, ‘Look at the view'”, referring to a story of her recovery that she now invokes whenever they feel overwhelmed and need to slow down.

But, she added, she’ll sometimes say to him, “I just need you to hug me.” I don’t need you to fix it.

Ms MoCrazy said she only cries now at what she calls “a regular level”. “I’m the most satisfied I’ve ever been,” she said.

She also found her way back to the slopes. “I had to completely relearn how to ski,” Ms MoCrazy said. Several months after her accident, she worked with an instructor at the National Ability Center in Park City, Utah. The center “allows people with cognitive and physical disabilities to enjoy the outdoors,” she said.

They named April 11 their “Alive to Thrive Day,” always doing something to celebrate life — including, for many years, returning to Whistler. So it was only fitting that the couple would get engaged on April 11, 2021, the sixth anniversary of Ms MoCrazy’s skiing accident and Mr Clark’s 29th birthday.

After climbing to the top of a mountain in the Big Cottonwood Canyons, just outside of Salt Lake City, Mr. Clark proposed. “We had gone on a ski tour with a photographer to document the day and our ability to scale peaks together,” Ms MoCrazy said.

The couple legally married on May 26 at her family’s home in Park City, with her mother and two siblings, Jeanee Crane-Mauzy and Jillian Crane-Mauzy, in attendance. Jillian, his youngest brother, officiated, having been appointed to perform the wedding by the Salt Lake County Clerk.

They had another ceremony in Whistler, Canada on May 28 at the top of the mountain that nearly cost him his life. In attendance were 80 vaccinated guests, including the groom’s parents, Gregory Clark and Laurinda Santos, as well as the bride’s mother, Ms. Mauzy, and her father, Jeffrey Crane. The ceremony, also led by Jillian, took place just before sunset at Whistler Blackcomb Resort.

“I’ve dreamed of getting married on the mountain all my life,” the bride said, adding that the doctor who treated her injuries after the skiing accident, Dr Mypinder Sekhon, was seated in the front row.

“It was amazing to watch it,” she said, “and see the view.”

When May 26, 2022

Where The bride’s family home in Park City, Utah. The couple had a second ceremony on May 28 atop Whistler Mountain.

A gift from beyond Ms MoCrazy’s sister, Dr Amy Crane, died of leukemia two months before the wedding. At the Whistler ceremony, the couple posed an enlarged photo of themselves in a blue dress, the color they planned to wear as bridesmaid to the wedding, on a stand so they could feature in wedding photos. Before he died, Dr Crane had told his sister, “I’m sorry I couldn’t be at your wedding”, but she gave the bride and groom a gift that day on the mountain, Mrs MoCrazy said: “A beautiful day that turned to snow.

Made with love Ms. MoCrazy’s mother, Grace Mauzy, made the bride’s wedding dress. “The dress has a four-foot train and includes separate top and bottom pieces,” Ms. MoCrazy said. “So when Reggie and I were doing our first dance, halfway through after a long swim, Reggie could unzip the skirt and I came out and started the second half which is more of a ‘Dancing with the Stars’ routine with a flip and air couple back.

Over the years The handmade lace veil Ms MoCrazy wore is over a century old, having been first worn by her great-grandmother, Janet Nicolson Eaton Macomber. “My mother and aunt also wore the veil,” Ms MoCrazy said.

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Newsrust - US Top News: A new start on the mountain that changed his life
A new start on the mountain that changed his life
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