IUP Student Undergoes Year-Long Recovery

Last year, Brandon Bushmire sustained major injuries when he was hit by a car near the IUP school campus. Since then, his recovery has been a slow but steady process.

In the year since he was hit, Bushmire has been put in and out of recovery centers, hospitals, and in-patient rehab. However, during occupational therapy, he managed to send a short message to his friends this past summer through Facebook. Since then, he has been relatively inactive online.

According to his father Alan, Brandon hasn’t been able to speak to anyone for any length of time. Even his online activities have temporarily ceased.

According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Alan said, “I am not sure he is coherent enough to anything with more than a head nod or a thumbs up or down.”

Because of the seriousness of his brain injuries, Bushmire’s doctors have told Alan that after multiple seizures, a coma, and five surgeries, the South Allegheny High School graduate will never be the same.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that Alan wrote in a victim impact statement, “I hope the image of him lying in the street is burned in the defendant’s brain forever because it is certainly burned into my brain and for that I shall never forgive anyone for what has happened to my son.”

Anthony Royster, the man who hit Bushmire, received a DUI following the incident. During the hearing, Royster pleaded guilty to reckless driving, which earned him a probation sentence and a license suspension. Original charges of aggravated assault by vehicle and aggravated assault while under the influence have since been withdrawn. The incident occurred on September 8, 2012, when Royster was out driving around 11:30 pm.

While Alan Bushmire’s initial view of Royster was harsh, his anger lessened when he learned that the 24-year-old IUP graduate had been following Brandon’s health status online through Facebook.

Bushmire’s Facebook account, “Brandon Bushmire Recovery Status,” contains updates from Brandon’s father.

This past July, Brandon’s message, “Hi its Brandon practicing my typing in ot,” earned over 580 likes on the “Brandon Bushmire Recovery Status” page.

While his son focuses on healing, Alan has spent over $13,000 renovating his house to accommodate a now wheelchair-bound Brandon. This money could have possibly paid for Alan’s wedding to his fiancee or vacation they had planned with Brandon. Fortunately, Brandon is expected to come home anytime during October or November.