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Success Story from Golden, CO

Jared King

In 2003, Jared King’s future was bright. The 19-year-old was on track to get a degree in the geosciences at the Colorado School of Mines, a public research university for engineering and applied science in Golden, Colorado, which boasts some of the nation’s highest admissions standards.

A car accident changed everything. Jared was on his way back to college from New Mexico when he rolled his truck and sustained a traumatic brain injury. He came to Craig Hospital to begin the rigorous process of healing, both cognitively and physically.

As he worked toward regaining his independence, Jared made an important personal goal: to return to the School of Mines and continue his education. His recovery was slower than he’d hoped, but the shared support of his peers at Craig offered the motivation he needed to improve.


“My time at Craig was hard, because the memory issues were extremely frustrating,” Jared said. At first, his balance was also very poor. He remembers struggling to walk on the treadmill. “There were others there who may never walk again who were encouraging me to work hard, to walk faster and to get better and get better. It was incredibly encouraging.”

When he graduated from Craig, Jared says he knew he was still healing. He wanted to go back to the Colorado School of Mines, but he soon realized he wasn’t ready. Jared stayed in New Mexico and took junior college classes.

“When I first went back to school, I realized I couldn’t function on the same academic level I was able to before my accident,” he said. Although he was eager to advance, he says that some of the best advice he got was to slow down and give his body the time it needed to heal.

After completing his bachelor’s degree, Jared was accepted into graduate school at the Colorado School of Mines. “That’s when I felt like I’ve made it full circle.” He did return to the place where he could do everything academically that he could do before the accident, but it felt different. “It was defining a new normal for me,” he said.

Today, Jared works as a hydrogeologist at a software company in Colorado. A multi-year recipient of the Craig Hospital Alumni Scholarship, Jared says he likes being able to contribute to help other Craig patients go back to school.

“For me recovery was primarily about perseverance and getting through it,” he said. “I now have the confidence that almost anything I encounter will pale in comparison to what it took to overcome my injury.”

Team Members

  • Alan H. Weintraub, M.D., Physician; Brain Injury Program Medical Director

    CNS Physician Group

    Alan Weintraub, MD has been Medical Director of the Brain Injury Program at Craig Hospital since 1986. Dr. Weintraub also serves as Medical Director for the Rocky Mountain Regional Brain Injury System, a federally designated Model System of Care with extensive clinical research and dissemination activities. Over his tenure in the field of traumatic brain injury care and rehabilitation, Dr. Weintraub has also served as Medical Director of post-acute residential brain injury programs and several long term subacute brain injury programs. He is board certified in PM&R and is fellowship trained in neurotrauma brain injury and spinal cord injury. He also is an Associate Clinical Professor at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and an active consultant to the Colorado Division of Worker’s Compensation Medical Treatment Guidelines TBI Task Force. As a Brain Injury Medicine Certified Subspecialist, Dr. Weintraub has special interests in predictive biomarkers for recovery, neuroimaging, pharmacological rehabilitation management, sports-related concussion and the long term consequences of brain injury. He is actively involved in local, regional and national organizations and is devoted to the aging and long term needs of brain injured survivors and their families. For over 30 years, Dr. Weintraub has lectured extensively to broad audiences, and written on a number of specific clinical and research topics related to both traumatic and acquired brain injury.

  • Karen Ramsey, Registered Nurse

  • Kent Hamstra, Inpatient Counselor

    Clinical Care Management

    Kent Hamstra MA, received his training and degree in Psychology from Hastings College in 1985 and Master of Arts degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from University of Iowa in 1986. He has been a member of the Craig Hospital inpatient TBI clinical team since 1987. Kent has been involved with multiple projects involving TBI. He is a member of the Craig Hospital TBI Supervisors Group.

  • Brenda Bertrand, Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist

    Therapeutic Recreation

    bbertrand@craighospital.org / 303-789-8342

  • Tiffany Heck, OT Supervisor Adaptive Transportation / Community Reintegration

    Community Reintegration

  • Jim Berry, Psychologist

  • Darlene Dumont, Respiratory Therapy Manager

    Respiratory Therapy

I made it full circle.

Jared King, Craig Grad 2003

Pushing ahead

“I really couldn’t imagine wanting to go through a rehab program anywhere else.”