Elan advocates against drunk driving

By Alejandra Carrillo

Nick Nevarez, a 21 year old who got a second chance at life, motivates young adults to stay away from life threatening activities.

At age 17, Nevarez and some friends were involved in a tragic car accident after leaving a rave and driving home high on pills and alcohol.

The accident took place on San Fernando Boulevard and Pacific Avenue in Glendale just around the corner from a fire station.

The accident left Nevarez with a one percent chance of living. Doctors replaced half of Nevarez’s skull with a piece of metal used to build space shuttle wings.

Nevarez says he hesitated to share his story with others because he initially planned to go back to the way he was living after he recovered.

During his recovery he realized how much people cared for him and how loved he was that he decided he would speak to other young adults about the consequences that come with drinking and driving, and how good life is.

“I realized what was important in life,” Nevarez said, explaining that he learned the importance of having and keeping relationships with family and friends.

Nevarez was in a coma for a week and did not remember what had happened to him when he woke up.

He explains that his first memory is seeing a nurse coming into the room and running tests on him.

In fact, one of the nurses at the hospital made a big impact in Nevarez’s life and according to him helped him get through his recovery a lot faster.

That nurse is London May, who other than being a nurse, is also the band Danzig’s drummer. He said that although he was not Nevarez’s nurse he would visit him often and read to him because he knew that Nevarez was a Danzig fan.

“I told Glenn Danzig, singer of Danzig, about Nick and he helped me put together a little care package for him with posters and drum sticks and shirts. I dropped by to meet him one day on my lunch break, Nick and I have been pals ever since,” May said.

That day Nevarez tried to walk but realized half of his body was paralyzed and that he was blind in one eye.

To this day he is unable to properly move his right foot.

After the car crash, Nevarez had several surgeries done, including brain surgery just 25 minutes after the accident occurred.

“I had to learn how to read, do math and walk. I started from scratch like if I was a baby,” Nevarez said.

He remained in the hospital for eight months and did therapy to help him recover.

Nevarez now shares his story and his journey through recovery with other people who are living the life he once lived.

Navarez speaks to young adults in high schools, churches and communities about the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

He was the first person in the city of Rosemead to address this issue to the community. He was also a big  influence in the  removal of Electric Dance Carnival from the USC Coliseum.

He wants to spread the word to all people on how important it is to safeguard their lives.

Nevarez says he has had 17 people come to him and thank him for changing their lives and leading them on the right path.

Nevarez now lives a normal life and says that the accident saved his life.

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