Feature Article

Employee recovers from major injuries to run marathon

By SUE ELLEN ROSS
BRIDGE Editor

Jason Buxbaum is living proof that determination and optimism can get you where you want to go.

Jason Buxbaum (right) running in the Chicago Marathon
Jason Buxbaum (right) running in the Chicago Marathon

The Hobart resident completed the 2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon last month. But not before the IS Department employee physically and mentally overcame major physical injuries sustained in a bicycle/auto accident in 2008.

“I was in the hospital CIU for two months, and when I tried to get out of bed, I thought I would never walk again,” Buxbaum said of his recovery period. “Then it was home for physical therapy.”

Driver alleges he didn’t see the cyclist on the road

The accident occurred in Crown Point while Buxbaum was riding a bicycle. The driver who struck Buxbaum said he didn’t see him. Buxbaum was wearing safety gear, but the impact was such that his helmet split from the impact, and he suffered both a broken femur and broken collar bone.

Running became by-product of physical therapy

An avid cyclist for many years, Buxbaum  belonged to a bicycle club that entered competitions.

Previously, he had never thought of becoming a runner. The path to his Chicago Marathon experience came about as he followed doctor’s orders for physical therapy after his accident.

“After one month in a wheelchair, I was able to ride a stationary bike to get my muscles moving,” he said. “Then I started running as a way to improve my bone density.”

His newly acquired enjoyment for running found him entering various running races around the area, as well as a few half-marathons.

Jason Buxbaum wearing his medal
Jason Buxbaum wearing his medal

End results are all good

Buxbaum finished the 26.2-mile Chicago Marathon in a respectable time, especially for a beginner, of 3 hours and 41 minutes.

It’s been a long journey on the road to recovery, and the doctors said the determined new runner would have had a much harder time had he not been in good physical condition before the accident. He credits his condition to regular workouts and his many years of cycling.

“I’m still not 100 percent, but pretty close to it,” he optimistically added.