It has been said that one who shows great courage is a hero. Then by dictionary definition Jimmy Brown is a hero. Determination, resilience and perseverance are three words that come to one’s mind after meeting Jimmy.
Cowboy has been in Jimmy’s blood from the time he was born in Hobbs, New Mexico. Jimmy’s mother states, “He grew up in cowboy boots!” Jimmy’s resilience became very obvious at an early age. At 8 weeks of age Jimmy had to overcome one of the biggest obstacles of his life. The family was in a car accident when he sustained a closed head injury and loss of vision in his right eye. At the early age of 5 months Jimmy began to suffer from seizures that affect him to this day. But don’t let that fool you. That resilient baby grew up to be a determined young man. Jimmy went on to attend special education classes in a public school. Growing up in the country provided Jimmy learning opportunities such as: how to use wood working equipment and performing daily chores. Jimmy’s mother states, “He was treated like all the kids and had chores just like the rest of them.”
Jimmy had strong religious faith early in his life. He grew up in a Pentecostal family that valued and practiced their faith. At 9 years of age, Jimmy’s uncle gave him a guitar and Jimmy’s life forever changed. Jimmy was able to play bass guitar after twenty minutes of his uncle’s teachings. Jimmy, to this day, can play by ear and it is truly amazing to watch him play and sing. Playing guitar and singing Gospel music is just one of the ways Jimmy shares his love of music and his strong faith. Jimmy not only shares his love of music but works as an assistant to the Chaplain on campus. He is instrumental in Sunday church services, Wednesday bible studies and other religious activities on campus.
Jimmy had many more obstacles in his life before residing at Lufkin State Supported Living Center that could have been crippling to the human spirit. Jimmy has had the determination to continue moving forward in his life and inspires others to do the same. Jimmy Brown is an example of the resilience of the human spirit and is a hero to us.