Injured death crash survivor fights to gain degree success

Grace Robinson, bottom right, and brother, Joe, bottom left, with mum Judi and dad Kevin

Grace Robinson, bottom right, and brother, Joe, bottom left, with mum Judi and dad Kevin

First published in News

JOE Robinson was left fighting for his life after a car crash on the A34 that killed one of his friends.

Given a mere three per cent chance of survival by medics, he was in a coma for a month.

Making a full recovery seemed nothing short of a miracle.

But now, five years on, he is preparing to graduate this month from Oxford Brookes University with a Masters in Real Estate.

Mr Robinson, now 23, said: “It’s like an ongoing battle. It’s like me versus the injuries so it does really take it out of me sometimes.

“It’s been something that has taken complete control and main importance in my life. I’m still walking on this path and I don’t know where the finish line is.”

In the crash, which killed 17-year-old friend Grace Hadman in April 2009, Mr Robinson broke his back in three places, neck in two places and had a skull fracture running halfway across his head.

Gabriella Edmondson, of Penn, Bucks, was sentenced to 28 months in jail and banned from driving for four years in October 2009 after pleading guilty to causing death by careless driving while drunk.

Then aged just 18, Mr Robinson needed round-the-clock care from the John Radcliffe Hospital’s neuro intensive care unit. The former pupil at Oxford’s St Edward’s School also caught pneumonia, meningitis and MRSA as his body battled the injuries. Mr Robinson, from Thame, said: “The accident made me realise how dangerous cars are and how we take them for granted. I really cherish every day. Life can change literally in seconds. It really hammers home to me how invaluable my family is to me.”

After leaving hospital on May 30, 2009, Mr Robinson was in a wheelchair for a month. He needed support from occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech therapists, brain consultants and neck and back specialists.

Mr Robinson still suffers problems with his short-term memory, attention, concentration, facial recognition, problem solving and planning.

Yet in 2013, his hard work paid off and he graduated from Exeter University with a 2:1 in Geography. While studying, he twice received the Dean’s Commendation for Outstanding Performance in Exceptional Circumstances, becoming the first person to receive the award twice in 55 years.

Now, to mark five years since the crash, Joe’s sister Grace Robinson has vowed to raise money for the medical unit that saved her brother’s life. She has already raised £800 after completing March’s Salisbury Aquathlon, as well as the Blenheim Triathlon and the Thame 10km Road Race in June.

And on Monday she began a week-long climb of 5,895 metre-high Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania, the highest mountain in Africa.

Miss Robinson, 22, said: “It’s been really difficult, but you just keep taking it in your stride and see how it goes. It’s hard but we are a close family, it’s been difficult but we get through it.

“Joe has kept going so it shows what perseverance can do. It’s still like a continuous journey, but I’m very proud of what he has achieved.”

Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS, SPORT and JAYDEN depending on what services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

  • Our top stories

Buses get some F1 technology

Oxford Mail: Williams F1 Image by Craig Styles(C)

7:30am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

A FORMULA One team from Oxfordshire has been the inspiration behind a new fleet of low emission buses.

Gifts galore as Facebook appeal couple tie the knot

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

A COUPLE who turned to Facebook for help to get married tied the knot at the weekend after being inundated with offers of support.

Golf club puts a defibrillator device in gym

Oxford Mail: Responder department manager Dick Tracey before his charity head, beard and moustache shave. Pictures: OX63860 Denis Kennedy

6:40am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

A GOLF club near Faringdon has installed life-saving equipment after a man died there earlier this year.

Councillor's resignation prompts call for council discussion

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

COUNTY council leader Ian Hudspeth has called for a “serious discussion” about the role of councillors.

Council pledges to repair Marston pavement

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

FEARS have been raised that broken, uneven and cracked pavement slabs could lead to elderly people having falls.

Victoria Cross hero’s Oxford grave to be renovated by charity

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Tuesday 2nd September 2014

THE grave of a Victoria Cross war hero is to be restored after a forces charity was alerted to its state by the Oxford Mail.

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree