Ryan Straschnitzki, 19, arrived at Shiner's Hospital for Children Thursday afternoon. He suffered a spinal cord injury in a horrific accident in Central Canada in April.
The bus, which was carrying the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team, collided with a semi-truck. Sixteen of Ryan's team members were killed in the accident.
Ryan was paralyzed from the chest down. He suffered a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collarbone, a punctured lung and bleeding in his head and pelvis and has been working to rebuild his strength.
Shriner's reached out to help with their specialized spinal cord rehabilitation program.
"The Shriners reached out a couple of weeks ago," said Ryan's father, Tom Straschnitzki. "He offered to have the Shriners make Ryan a Shriners Kid so he could go to Philly for spinal rehab there instead of staying here. It's a big-time boost. He's very excited. It's fantastic news. We haven't been there but we've heard about it, so you've gotta try it."
"We're here to help him become as independent and functional as possible to gain as much recovery as possible," said
"Every day I just keep my teammates in my heart and remind myself that I do it for them. Now I'm focused on getting better, keeping in touch with my teammates and being there for them," added Ryan.
Ryan's father traveled with him. He says the family has been overwhelmed by the amount of support from everyone in Canada, here in the US and many other places.
Ryan will stay at Shriner's for six to eight weeks doing physical and occupational therapy.
The bus collision is still being investigated.
The Broncos were on their way to a playoff game. Sixteen people were killed and 13 were injured. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police have said the truck was in the intersection when the crash occurred.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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