Tag Archives: Karen Mertes Lieutenant Colonel (ret)

Become a H.E.R.O. this Holiday Season

Fulfill Your Destiny presents H.E.R.O. – ‘Hands Eagerly Reach Out’ Awards to businesses, individuals, and organizations who have been instrumental in providing opportunities for Fulfill Your Destiny to carry out its mission and assist others. When we dare to care, our hands eagerly reach out to help others in need. Imagine how strong every community can become if hands eagerly reach out to help others when and where needed.

Many of these recipients have donated money and/or in-kind services to Fulfill Your Destiny enabling us to better help those individuals and organizations receiving assistance from Fulfill Your Destiny.

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Listed here are those businesses, individuals, and organizations that have received Fulfill Your Destiny’s H.E.R.O. Award:

Businesses:

  • Dunkin’ Donuts
  • Kendra Scott
  • Richter Publishing
  • Home Instead Senior Care
  • Invent Your Image
  • Balanced Accounting and Tax Services
  • Sew Be It
  • Jennie’s Flowers
  • The Empress Tea Room & Event Dining
  • Independent Financial Services
  • Macy’s Westshore
  • Minuteman Press of Town & Country
  • Canvas Zoo
  • Painting With a Twist
  • The Manhattan
  • MamaRazzi Foto
  • Whiskey Joe’s
  • Powell & Espat
  • Charity Chics
  • Doormet
  • The Rolling Pin
  • tcP! sweets
  • Mary Ann Halpin Photography
Individuals:
  • Julie Heidelberg
  • Terri Sullivan
  • Bobbie Williams
Organizations:
  • South Tampa Chamber of Commerce 19th Annual Fall Golf Classic Committee
  • Wheels of Success
  • Tampa Bay Lightning
To learn about opportunities for mutually beneficial strategic alliances or community partnerships with Fulfill Your Destiny, please contact Karen by e-mailing her at karen@fulfillyourdestiny.org or karen.mertes@yahoo.com.
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How to Spot the Emotional Stages of Recovery from a TBI

We all have different family situations, different jobs, different strengths, and different weaknesses. Despite all these differences, there are a number of very common emotional stages that people with a head injury go through. This is based upon my own experience treating patients, but many investigators note similar findings. Here are a view stages to spot when a loved one is recovering/suffering from a TBI.

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Confusion and Agitation

This can last minutes or it can last for months. In the hospital setting, this is very difficult for family members. Someone who is very meek and mild, for example, can be physically aggressive. They may punch the nurses, or swear and curse at family members. It’s very frightening for family members, and it feels like it is going to last forever. It may take a while, but people eventually come out of it.

Denial

The patient says, “There’s nothing wrong with me.” For example, they’re in a motor vehicle accident, they’re briefly seen in an emergency room, and they go home. Suddenly, they’re having difficulties. They’re forgetting things or burning food. Family members may say, “you seem different.” But the head-injured person says “No, there’s nothing wrong with me.

Anger and Depression

Denial is a very common problem, but eventually it breaks down. Head injury problems just don’t go away. The same problems happen over and over and over again. This leads to the next phase, in which the person has a limited awareness of the head injury, beginning what I call the depression/anger phase. When you realize you are different and can’t do things like you used to, you may become angry or depressed.

 

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How to Help Veterans with TBI

The holidays are coming and we have the ones we love on our minds more than ever. Veterans who have experienced TBI, including some who didn’t know they had a traumatic brain injury until later, talk about their experiences.

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Listen as they describe the signs and symptoms of TBI and its effects on their families. By reaching out for help, they were able to overcome these obstacles and live better lives. Check out this video that Make the Connection created –

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Honoring All Who Served | Happy Veteran’s Day

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For those who are interested in owning Amazon’s Best Seller, “Plaintiff 101” as a valuable resource:

Click here to >>ORDER<< your copy TODAY!

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Horror Stories of Teens Hitting the Road

We all can relate to the stories that are in Good Housekeeping’s video below of the terrors of either our parents teaching us how to drive- or teaching our own children how to drive.

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We need to prepare our future generations of drivers for the dangers of the road, and how they are responsible for not only their lives but those in the cars around them. Be a defensive driver, never drive drunk and always be aware of those around you —

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What Your Friends & Family Need to Know About Your TBI

Do you have a friend or a family member that has just been in an accident and is now suffering from a traumatic brain injury? Here are some key points about traumatic brain injury —

  • The effect of a TBI can vary depending on the severity of the injury and where it occurs
  • Around 1 in 3 injury-related deaths involve a TBI
  • Roughly 2% of Americans live with a TBI-related disability
  • The majority of TBIs are caused by falls
  • TBI symptoms may include confusion, persistent headaches and sleeping problems
  • If someone receives a head injury and experiences convulsions or slurred speech, they should seek urgent medical attention
  • A concussion is classed as a mild TBI
  • In America, TBI is the third most common injury to result from child abuse
  • Blood pressure can severely drop after a head injury.

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Mertes suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the accident. But she is more than a survivor. She has turned tragedy into triumph, helping others who have had their world shattered pick up the pieces.

Through Fulfill Your Destiny, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, Lt. Col. Mertes financially aids people in the Tampa Bay community whose careers have been altered by injury or unforeseen circumstances. Special consideration is given to those who have sustained a traumatic brain injury.

“Imagine if you could no longer do what you are trained and experienced to do today.  What if everything you have worked for educationally and professionally was gone in an instant? This is my story. Following my injury and treatment, it became apparent I could no longer perform the work required of a military officer with a Top Secret clearance.”


plaintiff-101-cover-audioGrab your copy of her Amazon Best Seller, Plaintiff 101, here!

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Book Karen to Speak at Your Fall Commencement!

Now that school is in session it is very important to communicate to incoming freshmen and even returning students the dangers of driving even after one drink.

Hit by a Drunk Driver at over 100 mph and Alive to Tell

Karen Mertes, a Lieutenant Colonel in our United States Air Force, was driving the speed limit on the interstate when she was struck by a drunk driver traveling over 100 mph.  He had a blood-alcohol level of nearly three times the legal limit.  Both vehicles were totaled.  Her axle snapped in half, with brakes and steering inoperative.  Karen made a futile attempt to regain control of her vehicle as her car slid sideways down the interstate. Other cars still remaining in the bordering lanes traveling by her at highway speeds.  During these split seconds, as her life hung in the balance, Karen made a bargain and promised that if she were fortunate to survive, she would spend the rest of her life helping others.  This was the genesis for what has become Fulfill Your Destiny, Inc. www.fulfillyourdestiny.org

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