Start Here – Essential Blogs

This is a great place to start if you’re new to Nick Fener’s Adventures, or just haven’t checked in for a while.

Thanks for being here!


From the day after Nick’s accident, I knew this would be a long journey. He had numerous surgeries, including a 13 hour spine surgery where they placed two rods in his lower spine.

After eight days in a drug-induced coma, he woke up to severe hallucinations. It took three more days to get him off the heavy drugs so he could be alert and proactive in his recovery. He took a freight train mentality to his healing and began asking the tough questions right away.

On June 9th, three weeks after the accident, Nick had a surgery that would change his life forever.  Those first three weeks were tough, but the love of family and friends, and a little goofing around, really helped pull us through.

After a month in the hospital he was moved into a rehab facility where he got to work out 3 hours each day. He didn’t feel he was ready at the time, but I knew he couldn’t lay in that hospital bed any longer. I decorated his room to make it warm and friendly. Despite his pain and the stress of a life flipped upside down, we had fun with our friends and the staff at Ballard.


On July 16th, we said goodbye to Ballard, and finally came home.

His amputation wounds were slow to heal, so we spent an entire month making daily trips to a hyperbaric chamber, and hanging out with a seven foot paper mache penis.

Our super awesome, tireless, dedicated friends spent the hot summer months planning some amazing fundraising events for us. There was a Ball Drop by friends from Skydive Elsinore over a beautiful golf course in Lake Elsinore, a killer auction and party called Feet For Fener at Skydive Perris that had an insanely huge turn out, and a mega cool Art Auction at our friends tattoo studio in Oxnard. See, we have bad ass friends!

Nick had his second (and last) spine surgery on August 18th, which left him with a gnarly scar. Chicks dig scars, right?

We had a few set backs along the way that were absolutely terrible at the time, but taught us some valuable lessons.

Four months after the amputations, he was finally healed and ready to go swimming and get fitted for his brand new legs. His first attempt at walking was emotional and triumphant. When he finally got to take his legs home, we realized that the work had just begun.

He kept a grueling schedule of physical therapy 3 days a week, and training at the gym 3 days a week. All his hard work eventually led to him driving with hand controls, driving go-karts, and driving himself places without assistance.

We are so grateful for the progress he’s made in his recovery. The napping hard and playing hard give him the energy to do things like speak to high school kids and help other people with similar injuries.


Seven months after his injury, Nick sent me on a wild goose chase for days, and to the shock of our family and friends, he finally proposed to me on my birthday. Of course I said YES!

Around that same time, the manufacturer of Nick’s parachute finally released a service bulletin admitting errors in the construction of the canopy he was flying when the accident happened.

A new car, long awaited engagement, and acknowledgement of Nick’s faulty parachute were all huge highs at the end of a shitty year. But soon after, reality hit again, and we discovered that Nick is shorter than some midgets.

My tough life experiences readied me for this new challenge of taking care of Nick, but I was never prepared for the torturous, frustrating phantom pain attacks that Nick suffers from.


On January 25th, 2012, Nick’s life would again change forever with his first therapy session at Project Walk, where he made his debut by walking unassisted with a walker for the first time.

He works extremely hard at his therapy appointments. After nine months, and a few minor adjustments to his prosthetics, Nick finally stood up straight without holding onto anything and could walk with just his hand crutches.

Soon he began walking with only one hands support, and committed to using his crutches for all daily tasks. This decision led to his first wheelchair-free day!

We’ve had some rough times, but 7 years together has made us stronger. Even though I’ve been mourning what we lost, I am excited for our future.

After everything that’s been given to Nick over the last year, he has decided to give back and get busy living a life of adventure again.

Before & After

4 comments on “Start Here – Essential Blogs

  1. Pingback: If not now, when? « Silly Truths

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  3. Nice, concise description of the past year. I’ve been reading your daily posts….I have only been away for about 3 weeks, You’ve inspired me daily. Love, Julie (former neighbor on Pretty Doe)

  4. So wish I could be there for Nicks jump. Its Xmas time and as you know im in retail, this means im working 7 days a week. I would love to jump with you guys some time. I only have during AFF so it would be an honor. If your out this way (Redlands) swing by Redlands Jewelers and see me. This entire month we keep food, sodas, beer & wine out. I love the company!

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