Injury: Traumatic Brain Injury, Left Hip Injury w/ Reconstruction
Brandy Walling started working as a Dallas Police Officer in 2014 after a career change from a critical care paramedic in 2001. In 1995, she was involved in a car accident where she was thrown from a vehicle’s back seat window after being struck by a drunk driver. She suffered her first TBI with an open skull fracture along with major lacerations all over her body. Several surgeries later, she recovered without any major long-term disabilities. Working as a paramedic after that type of injury gave her a very different perspective on her life and the life of others when they are ill or injured. She began teaching paramedic school and other card courses required for people in the medical field and loved every second of it. She wanted to be a nurse and started school again working towards her nursing career and then finalized her last career change with DPD.
Working deep nights has many challenges, but she has always worked nights so she could spend the most time with her 3 amazing children. In August of 2016, she was involved in an on-duty accident resulting in her 2nd TBI with skull fractures and a laceration to the side of her head. Her hip was injured requiring a reconstruction and anchors to hold it together along with several other repairs that required surgery as well. After her accident, she had no memory of her kids along with other memory problems which she still struggles with. The TBI caused cognitive, vestibular (balance), speech and physical complications that she had to work on in each type of therapy specifically. She woke up 10 days after the accident and was unable to speak. She struggled to be able to get words out but has improved very much over time with speech therapy. She had hip surgery in January and used a walker for almost 3 months. Her hip flexor was cut in half so she was not able to have full function in lifting her leg or moving in certain ways, so she has to pick it up herself to move around. She slowly regaining strength and range of motion with physical therapy.
Brandi heard about ATF through a co-worker. After visiting several times and getting to know the staff, she submitted an application, wanting to be a part of this amazing team of men and women. According to Brandi, “the struggles that are not always external for others to see, can be very difficult to overcome after trying to recover and get back to “normal”. She has 3 amazing children, 2 boys (20 and 10) and 1 girl (12), they keep her pushing forward to be a stronger mother and Police Officer.