ATV Accident Survivor Celebrates Twentieth Birthday

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FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- More than three years ago, a Muldrow teen was severely injured after his ATV ran off the road and crashed.

Now, Christian Mayberry is celebrating his 20th birthday.

Christian opened the doors to a big surprise on Saturday (Feb. 25) when his family and friends threw him a surprise party.

"It's just a blessing to be here to see him and where he's come from and where he's at now," State Representative (R-Sallisaw) and friend, John Bennett said.  "To see all of his family and friends come out and it makes him feel very special and great."

Christian said he had an idea that his friends and family had something up their sleeves.

"A little bit yes and a little bit no,"  Mayberry said. "But, mostly yes. I'm pretty surprised. I kind of had a feeling that something was going on."

Now a motivational speaker, Mayberry is working to inspire others.

"It's been absolutely amazing," friend, Emilee Watkins said. "It's been a blessing on me and of course everybody else around him. [He is] not only growing in strength, but also in Christ. He's just been phenomenal."

"He's inspired so many because [doctors] said that he would never move again at best and probably die after the accident," Bennett said. "He's come so far and offered so much inspiration to so many people in the United States and they've contacted him and said you have inspired us to keep fighting and keep going."

But, not without a few laughs and dance moves in between.

"It's not my 20th for nothing," Mayberry said.

"He's a cut-up and a character," Bennett said. "One thing he didn't lose was his great personality and he just loves to joke around and play and have fun."

As Christian's mom reflects on past birthdays spent in the hospital, she said this one is extra special.

"This is just amazing," mother, Kim Mayberry said. "He's just out there dancing and walking and having such a good time with everybody."

Several of the party-goers were people that Christian had never met, but instead people he has inspired with his story.

Christian's friends and family said they plan to have big celebrations for Christian's birthday each year.

To follow what Christian is up to now or to learn more about his story, follow his Facebook page, Pray For Mayberry. 

Christian is also open for speaking opportunities and can be contacted on his Facebook page, as well.