The water-ski community definitely has its share of standout personalities, and people that love sharing the sport with others. Heather Young is one of those fine skiers. The passionate Women’s 3 tournament skier, who’s currently ranked sixth in the nation in the slalom event, enjoys year-around skiing with her husband, Mike, and their two young girls, Chloe and Elle. The Young family has made deep connections in the sport, not only at their Winter Garden, Florida home at the Isles of Lake Hancock, but also at the Sweetwater Ranch Ski Club, located just outside of Vail, Colorado. It’s there that Heather has inspired countless people of all ages to learn to ski. Besides founding and actively managing the club, the Youngs host tournaments and also shuttle their promo boat to events throughout the state. “Heather’s one of the most determined skiers I’ve ever seen on the water,” says her friend Leigh Ross. “People line the shore to watch her ski, and she gives everything she’s got.”
Heather will need that gutsy determination to get through the next stage of her life. In late October, at her home in Colorado, she fell down a flight of stairs while carrying a bin of household supplies. The impact from her fall caused hairline fractures in her neck and ribs, but most traumatic was the damage to her brain (diffuse axonal injury [DAI]), which rendered her unconscious. Against all odds, she is currently recovering at the top-notch Craig Rehabilitation Center, in Denver, Colorado, making improvements with her awareness and progress, yet still confused at times.
One of Heather’s close childhood friends, Stephanie Raap, has been providing updates on Heather’s condition and progress at: www.caringbridge.org/visit/heathernevinsyoung. Countless people in the water- ski community have come together, sending in their prayers, and support to the family. Our thoughts go out to Heather, her family, and her friends. – By Geena Krueger