ABOUT FRIENDS FOR MICHAEL
Friends For Michael was founded in 1997 due to the car accident of eighteen year old Michael Brent, well known in the community for his academic and athletic talents. In January 2001, FFM set up an endowment with the Kentucky Spinal Cord Research Center at the University of Louisville. In 2002 FFM joined with the Kentucky Wheelchair Athletic Association and Derby City NSCIA to form the very first Spinal Cord Injury Association of Kentucky (SCIAK) FFM sponsors several annual events that has brought in several celebrities such as Hall of Fame Coach Denny Crum, Miss America Heather French Henry, 2003 Ms. Wheelchair KY Missy Jenkins and 2005 Ms. Wheelchair KY Michelle Bazeley, former UofL Football Coach John L. Smith, former IRL Driver, now team owner, Sam Schmidt, Olympian Medalist Dr. Doug Sharp, and nationally renowned researcher Dr. Scott Whittemore, and more. In May 2004, Michael received UK’s Adelstein Award, given to students with disabilities who are inspirations to others & graduated from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor’s in Broadcast Journalism. . Michael returned in the fall and became staff writer for the Cat’s Pause while he pursued his Masters degree. Michael was just 2 1⁄2 wks away from graduation when he passed away. In 2007 we also made our first donation to the University of Kentucky Spinal Cord & Brain Injury Research Center and set up a scholarship fund through the UofK Disability Service Center.
In honor of Michael, Friends For Michael broke ground on April 17, 2008 for the new “ALL ACCESSIBLE PLAYGROUND at the new Henry County Recreational and Services Park being built in New Castle, KY. This project is scheduled to open in 2009. Michael is no longer in our physical presence but his faith, courage and determination will continue to inspire many for years to come. His story and memory will not die, but will continue to help us strive towards helping others. It is what Michael would have wanted. Please come be a part of something wonderful happening because of such a terrific young man!
Our mission is to encourage and support research that will help victims overcome their spinal cord injuries as well as providing grants and activities to improve the quality of life for the individuals having this disability, providing educational spinal cord injury awareness and prevention to others and award annual scholarships to students who volunteer their time to the organization.
- Our Mission Statement