Hairdresser Megan Reynolds was paralyzed from the waist down in a car accident in 2010 while on the way to a University of Michigan football game. Today, she is the local marketing manager for a Sport Clips Haircuts in Granville, Michigan. Her story is one of triumph over tragedy and she is an inspiration to anyone fortunate enough to know her.
“I started working at Sport Clips in 2008 as stylist and moved up to manager,” said Reynolds. After the accident, she was in a coma and her initial prognosis included severe head injury, bleeding on the brain, burns and back fractures. She was in the Intensive Care Unit for a month and then spent the next 10 months between hospitals and inpatient facilities. Once released from the hospital, she was in outpatient therapy five days a week. Since the accident, her employer, Stacey Patulski, local Sport Clips Haircuts franchisee, has worked with her to create an opportunity that fits her adapted skills.
“It has been a real journey back. When something this tragic happens to you, it becomes hard to see myself as I used to be, as beautiful on the outside and the inside,” says Reynolds. “I started again at Sport Clips almost a year ago and everyone has been so helpful and accommodating. It means so much to me to be contributing and to feel needed.”
Her injuries mean she has no feeling in her right hand or arm so she was not able to continue cutting hair but Reynolds has returned as a Sport Clips marketing manager.
“From working as a stylist in the store you get an idea of what marketing makes sense. This year, I have become part of our local Chamber of Commerce and I have joined forces and created marketing relationships with sports bars and with Cabelas, which sells outdoor gear for hunting and fishing. We have done events together.”
Her commitment to her store and to Sport Clips equals her determination that being in a wheelchair should not define who she is as a person.
“People stare because I’m in a wheelchair but I want to be viewed as a person who happens to be sitting in a wheelchair and not let the wheelchair designate or take over who I am. Everyone looks at you and they say, I’m sure you’ll get better, and my answer is I am better, I am ok and this is the new me. My long term goal is continued recovery and, God-willing, I’m going to move forward with my life.”
She attended the Sport Clips National Huddle Convention with a boost from Sport Clips CEO Gordon Logan who funded the trip. “He also paid the way for my sister to accompany me as my nurse because this was my first trip in a wheelchair. He came up and gave me a hug and said thank you so much for coming and for me it was a huge morale booster.”
And in an industry focused on beauty, Megan Reynolds is a reminder to look beyond the outside into the inner beauty.
“Nobody is perfect and you just need to be yourself. Everyone has flaws. I try to see through the superficial and move into the goal and move into the future. One of my goals is expressed in this quote, which I love, ‘Live with a smile on your face, hope in your heart and faith in your mind.’ I try to wake up with a smile on my face and keep on going.”