Travis RoszellWhen Travis Roszell was first injured at work, there’s no question his injuries were visible – devastatingly visible to him and all his family and friends. Travis had been working on construction of a water park and was conducting a hydrostatic pressure test when a pipe overpressurized and burst. The impact shattered most of the bones in his face. His family was told he might not survive the night.

Travis is now a Threads of Life family member, and one of our newest volunteer speakers. After months in hospital, rehab and countless surgeries, you would hardly guess when you see him, the gravity of those injuries. But today, it’s the injuries you can’t see that Travis wants to focus on.

“I suffered a mild to moderate traumatic brain injury,” he says. “This, I would learn, changed more than my physical appearance. The injury to my frontal lobe made me a different person. I didn’t react to things the same way, I didn’t feel the same about things that I once did. I would easily get frustrated and angered with myself and my capabilities. I became very emotional, unable to deal with my feelings and understand what or why this was happening. This change proved to be almost as hard if not harder than the physical change in my appearance.”

Trying to find a way to cope with the turmoil and pain, Travis realized he survived his injuries for a reason and found a new purpose: he is not only needed by his family and friends; he is needed by others who are experiencing what he lived through.

“I need to share my experience to let others know they are not alone. There are people that care,” he says. And he’s planning to do that in a very concrete, and inspiring way. Starting in June, Travis will be running from Sherwood Park Alberta to Victoria BC, raising money for Networks Activity Centre Society of Alberta, which provides programs for people surviving a brain injury. He hopes to also share some funds with Threads of Life, and will be speaking at the Steps for Life walk in Edmonton May 4.

“The goal behind doing this run is to raise awareness and promote these organizations to help other people overcome and deal with the things that I struggled to deal with on my own,” Travis says. “My buddy Nick and I were running, and I had this great idea. I turned to Nick and I’m like, ‘hey, should we plan a run to the coast?’ We joked about it and talked about it, but it was never anything really serious until recently, and it was like ‘let’s do it’.”

Doing it will mean a 42-km run every day “for as long as it takes to get from Edmonton to Victoria”, likely 41 days barring injury or rest days.

Travis hopes people will come and join him for segments of his run. You can learn more at his website, The online map will show what day he expects to be in each community along the route.

On top of his brain injury, Travis deals with loss of hearing in one ear, reduced sight in one eye, loss of sense of smell and taste, tinnitus and migraines. “The injury that I sustained is far more than I realized at the time, so much more to learn.” he says. “We all have good days and bad days, but we do things with a purpose now.”

“It’s going to be hard,” he adds of his marathon run, “but when you get to the end, to that finish line or to that goal, it’ll be so worth it.”