Brain Injury Gives Man A Second Chance To Be Kind | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

Brain Injury Gives Man A Second Chance To Be Kind

Play associated audio

Four years ago, Marco Ferreira was riding his motorcycle down an isolated road in Los Angeles when he hit some grout and had an accident.

Though he was wearing a full helmet, leather pants and jacket, Ferreira suffered a traumatic brain injury.

When he woke from a six-week coma, his wife, Wendy Tucker, was there.

"You didn't walk, you didn't talk, and you couldn't feed yourself for seven months," she says during a visit with the 48-year-old Ferreira to StoryCorps in San Francisco. "Since then, it's just been getting better all the time."

But Ferreira, a former lawyer, remembers nothing from the time of the accident and doesn't feel like he's getting better.

"My mind, I feel, is so damaged; it's kind of made my life very hard to live, really," he says. "I tried to commit suicide, because I thought that I'd lost so much of my life, why be alive? Why? So I took a drug overdose, but you took me to the hospital."

When the 52-year-old Tucker asks her husband if he's sorry she saved his life, however, he says no.

"You did the right thing," Ferreira says. "You saved my life, and you're still saving it. Every day you save it."

Tucker, who is also an attorney, reminds her husband that before the accident, he was slightly sarcastic.

"You were always the guy known for the quick wit," she says. "Do you feel that now you're kinder in some way than you were before?"

"Absolutely, I am," Ferreira tells his wife. "Absolutely."

Before the accident, he was salty to their nieces. Tucker says that even though Ferreira's always loved them, before the accident, he "didn't have the openness to them."

"They bugged me before," he says with a laugh. "All kids bugged me before the accident, that's the weird thing. I wouldn't even invite people to our house because they have kids, for Christ's sake. I wouldn't do it. And now, I love my nieces. I love those girls.

"This is my second chance to be good and kind," Ferreira says. "Thank you very much for all your love."

Ferreira and Tucker have been married since 2001.

Audio produced for Morning Edition by Katie Simon.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Box Office Wallows In A Summer Slump, And Some Seek To Find Out Why

Only one movie in July, Transformers: Age of Extinction, has broken the 100 million mark during its opening weekend. Box office receipts all summer have proven anemic. Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst with RENTRAK, talks to Audie Cornish about the box office slump.
NPR

Fast-Food Scandal Revives China's Food Safety Anxieties

An American-owned company that supplies meat to fast-food chains in China has pulled all its products made by a subsidiary. An expose revealed some of the products were mishandled and had expired.
NPR

After 5 Weeks Of Haggling, Congress Inks Bipartisan VA Bill

Congress has reached a bipartisan deal to reform the Department of Veterans Affairs, after nearly two months of tense negotiations.
NPR

'Like' Something? Social Networks Would Like You To Buy It Too, Please

Social networks like Facebook and Twitter are increasingly finding ways to move into e-commerce, adding buttons and acquiring startups that encourage users to buy products on their sites. Hannah Kuchler of the Financial Times discusses the moves with Audie Cornish.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.