Meet Jacy Good

By on January 14, 2015

 

Jacy Good

Jacy Good

In May 2008, Jacy Good was basking in the thrill of her graduation from Muhlenberg College. She graduated with Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude honors, and originally planned to return to and settle down in Lancaster County.
However, on her first day of college she met her future husband, Steve Johnson, and they quickly became friends. As graduation approached, she decided to eventually follow Johnson to New York and work for Habitat for Humanity.
Growing up on the border of Ephrata Township, her formative years were spent as an active member of Ephrata’s Bethany United Church of Christ. Despite many years in Bethany’s youth choir, Good admits she can’t carry a tune or match a note to save her life.
Good was filled with delightful anticipation of her future during her trip home to Lancaster County on her graduation day. She was riding with her parents, Jean and Jay Good. Her brother, Jared, had also attended her celebration, driving separately. Jean Good was a beloved English teacher at the Ephrata Middle School.
In a split second, on Route 222, all of their dreams were shattered. A teenage driver, distracted by a cell phone conversation, caused an accident that instantly killed both of her parents and left Jacy Good in a coma with a 10 percent chance of survival. Ironically, her parents had given her a graduation card that boasted, “We are so proud of you, we could die happy.”
Her recovery was a long and painful process as she learned to do everything over again, along with permanent injuries.
Today, Good is a nationally known and awarded advocate for cell-free roads as she travels the country and shares her story. Since 2011, she has given more than 450 talks.
What is the hardest part of your job: “Knowing that no matter how hard I work, I can never reach everyone. Knowing that some people will never find the empathy to imagine themselves in my shoes is very difficult some days. But my best quality is stubbornness, so I won’t stop trying any time soon.”
Who would you like to meet in person: “I think it would be incredible to sit down for lunch with the Dalai Lama.”
What can always be found in your refrigerator: “That changes on a weekly basis, but right now I can’t get enough avocados!”
What is your all-time favorite movie: “I should maybe grow up, but no movie will ever beat ‘10 Things I Hate About You’.
What is your favorite magazine: “Favorite!! It is independent, open-minded and always gives me ideas to improve my life”.
What is your favorite spectator sport: “Baseball. I started playing softball when I was 8 years old. I love watching it because I understand the strategy of the game”.
Your favorite teams: “If I want to be happy, Philadelphia Phillies. If I want my husband to be happy, New York Yankees”
What is something you can’t do: “I could list a million things because of my handicaps from the accident. I can’t run, move my left fingers, wrist, ankle or toes. I can’t wink with my left eye, swim, skip or ride a two-wheel bike. But more exciting is what I can do! I can make a ponytail with one hand. I can drive my adapted car. I cook and clean daily. I can take care of myself and live a wholly independent life. And thanks to my awesome big brother Goody, I can even maneuver a glove to throw a baseball around with one hand!”
Do you prefer city or suburbs: “I grew up in the boonies of Lancaster County and never thought I could survive a city. But it turned out that was because I had never lived in a city. Now I hope I never live without a sidewalk again”.
Favorite get away: “From the time I was 2 months old, I’ve never had a year without a visit to Rehoboth Beach.”
Something you always try to avoid: “Feeling sorry for myself. I was dealt a different hand of cards and some days are very tough. I remind myself that everyone goes through tough times and throwing pity parties does nothing to improve my life or this world. It’s up to us to make the world into the place where we want to live.”

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