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Singing Cowboy Raises Funds for Spinal Cord Injury Research

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    Singing Cowboy Raises Funds for Spinal Cord Injury Research

    Hello to all,

    I am usually not one to write a to a forum or bulletin board but I surfed in while reading more about SCI and I found these boards. I feel so strongly about this special person that I couldn't sit quiet without telling you
    about him. Knowing where to begin this story is difficult for me as there are so
    many things I want to say and I am not sure how to organize my thoughts. Let
    me begin by telling you that the special person I am writing about is a quiet Iowa
    farmer who has changed the lives of many people and still wants no recognition
    for himself. Mr. Brooke Turner lives in New Market Iowa and farms , but he is so
    much more than just that. He is also a poet/songwriter how used his talents to
    touch the lives of hundreds of people.

    Last May Brooke's sister, Jyl Waters, fell three feet from a forklift on the
    family farm and was paralyzed from the chest down. It was a tragic accident that
    not only changed the lives of Jyl and her husband and children, but also
    changed the life of all the family involved, including her brother Brooke. Brooke
    has written many poems and songs over the years just for his and his families
    enjoyment but this time the song he wrote was destined to touch the lives of
    people far beyond his immediate circle. He wrote a song for Jyl (entitled "Now I
    Know What True Love Is") and everyone injured by spinal cord injuries, and he
    took the song on the road to raise money for Spinal Cord Injury Research. His
    quest to spread his song and message was not in a conventional way...he
    decided to ride horseback 730 miles to Nashville to perform the song at
    Cowboy Church. In doing so he wanted to raise money by performing the song
    along the way and also by taking donations and good wishes with him. At first
    those of us who know Brooke may have been skeptical but then when we saw
    his determination and heard the song we knew it was a journey he had to
    take...and he took us all along for the amazing ride.

    Through 5 states and many weeks he traveled on his horse along with a
    covered wagon, and sang, talked and rode his way into everyone's heart. I
    joined the caravan from home..calling, writing and trying to help spread the
    message of this Krazy Kowboy as he approached each town. It was amazing to
    me how many people were touched by Brooke's song and his 730 mile ride and
    over the many weeks all of us who helped him reach Nashville became a family.
    His aim was NOT to make it big in the industry, rather just to fulfill his mission
    and return home. His dream was that along the way someone, somewhere would
    hear the song and be touched enough by it's lyrics and tune to try and help him
    sell it to a large music publisher in an effort to get it recorded by a major country
    western singer. He wanted to sell the song to raise money for research for all
    victims of spinal injury and take NOTHING for himself. He has a rich life at
    home, a loving family and children, a beautiful farm and great friends...he only
    wanted to help those who had less. He rode for all those who couldn't ride any
    longer. Including his sister Jyl, who told him ..." You make the ride but don't do it
    for me, do it for Spinal Cord Injury Research".

    Everyone who helped, formed a bond that will never be broken..because
    of this lone man we all came to be a family. Glen Nelson who drove the covered
    wagon all the way, Eldon and Royce who drove the horse trailers 3 miles an
    hour the whole 730 miles to Nashville and supplied water and food along the
    way, Richard Wagaman who helped me in calling and planning and overseeing
    the ride so Brooke actually had a route and places to stay at night, Brooke's wife
    Pallin who held down the fort at fort and kept the farm going while he rode, and
    ALL the persons who came out along the way offering food, horse feed and even
    a washing machine to wash his dirty laundry, we all became a group on a
    mission and connected at the heart. Even to this day we call regularly to see
    how everyone is doing, how their families are and if anyone needs
    anything....Brooke brought us together and we are forever indebted.

    I personally have never been involved in something so fulfilling and
    moving. Brooke always kept us encouraged and reminded us of why he was
    doing this. The further he got from Iowa ,the more lonely the first 100's
    joined him for part of the ride at various times but as time went on the ride fell to
    just this one man on his horse. The covered wagon rode ahead to let people
    know of his journey and his desire to let them hear his song and join in his
    mission..but ultimately no matter how much we all wanted to help him, it fell on
    him to finish what he had begun. He uttered something at one stop that grew to
    be our ride motto...."We ain't smart, but we ain't scared" That in a nutshell
    described all of us as we worked our way to Nashville. We may have not been
    the smartest group but with Brooke in the lead we never got scared of the

    Brooke not only touched the lives of me and my family but also the hundreds of people who
    came out to see him ride by or hear his song.I can't count the number of persons
    in wheelchairs were in the crowd as he sang and he would seek each one out
    individually after the show to hear their story and promise his support via
    research. From not parking in a handicapped spot to just acknowledging a
    wheelchair bound person, he raised the awareness of everyone he met. He
    never wanted money for himself..just the joy of knowing he was helping others
    through his music. Even though he reached Nashville and sang his song that
    Sunday in Cowboy Church, I still think he feels he failed. He didn't, but in his
    heart he wanted to give so much more than he was able in the end. The money
    went to further the research of Dr. McDonald at the Washington Research Lab in
    St. Louis. The same doctor working with Christopher Reeves. Dr. McDonald met
    with Brooke on his ride and was so impressed with song that he had Brooke sing
    it over and over at the Rehab Institute to encourage all those working there. He
    too felt the strong message this song imparts and felt Brooke was meant to be
    the one to bring this plight of many to the public's attention.

    Since his first ride last year Brooke has continued to support Spinal Cord Injury Research and endeavor to raise money through his music and poems. He has set up a website at where anyone can hear parts of his songs and read more about Jyl and her rehabilitation.

    Many people pass through our lives and a few leave their brand on
    our hearts..this Iowa cowboy/poet is one of those persons who leaves a mark
    that you never forget.

    You will never forget this quiet Iowa cowboy with the big heart. You could
    not find a more deserving "angel" if you tried. The only thing different about this
    angel is he is on horseback and his wings are hidden by a western shirt...but
    make no doubt they are there.

    Thanks for letting me tell you about this cowboy crusading for SCI research.


    KLC, Bless your heart for sharing this with us, I'd like to say more but I'd start crying. Keep us posted, please.

    "All you have to decide is what to do with the time that is given you."
    Gandolf the Great

    2010 SCINet Clinical Trial Support Squad Member

    "You kids and your cures, why back when I was injured they gave us a wheelchair and that's the way it was and we liked it!" Grumpy Old Man

    .."i used to be able to goof around so much because i knew Superman had my back. now all i've got is his example -- and that's gonna have to be enough."


      Here is more info about this dedicated & wonderful man, posted earlier on life




        Keep writing about this wonderful man. Love can know no bounds when it is the love of a family for one another.

        Steve in St. Louis
        "Carpe carp."--- Seize the fish!


          Annual Griswold event to raise funds for spinal cord injury research

          Annual Griswold event to raise funds for spinal cord injury research
          TOM MCMAHON, Staff Writer
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          Submitted photo

          Singer Brooke Turner of Clarinda, left, organized the Annual Ride for Spinal Cord Research four years ago after his sister, Jyl Waters, right, was injured in a farm accident.

          GRISWOLD - Four years ago singer Brooke Turner got on his horse and took off for Nashville, a new song he had written in hand.

          His motivation was not to get a record contract or record a Top 40 hit. Turner, of Clarinda, was raising money for spinal cord injury research after his sister, Jyl Waters, suffered an injury.

          "He wrote a song for me about the accident," Waters said. She said Turner gave concerts and sold his compact discs along the 700-mile route, featuring "Now I Know What True Love Is."

          His Nashville horse ride has developed into an annual fund-raiser and on July 16 the Fourth Annual Ride for Spinal Cord Research will take place. The destination is not Nashville, but Griswold and walkers and motorcycles will join horses at this year's event. Turner will perform and Waters, of Cumberland, and her family - husband, Donnie, and children, Jacob, 13, and Tara, 10 - will be there.