WEST SPRINGFIELD — A West Springfield orthodontist has teamed up with the family of a teenage patient who was paralyzed in a swimming accident to share a story of resilience.

Kicking off a campaign called "Patients of Inspiration," Yanni Family Orthodontics enlisted a marketing coordinator to make a 7-minute video that focuses on 16-year-old Conor McCormick's life and outlook since his injuries left him confined to a wheelchair.

"'Patients of Inspiration' gives the men and women in our community a voice to share their stories and inspire others," Dr. Janice Yanni said in a statement. "We wanted to cover this story for so many reasons. ... Conor's attitude, his determination and faith have affected myself, my family, my staff. ... I wanted to do everything in my power to help him."

The video, which has been viewed about 33,000 times on Facebook, features interviews with McCormick, his family, friends and several other people who know him. Most of those interviewed expressed pride about McCormick's positive outlook and determination to succeed in the face of his disability.

"My favorite thing about Conor is that he never gives up," Jeremy McCormick, Conor's father, said in the video. "He works very hard at everything he does."

On July 17, Conor McCormick hit his head jumping into the shallow end of a friend's pool, causing severe spinal cord injuries. It was immediately obvious to McCormick that the trauma he suffered was severe.

"I couldn't move my legs, I couldn't move anything, in that moment I could only move my face," McCormick said in the video. "By God's grace I didn't panic."

Gabriella Maulucci, the marketing coordinator brought in by Yanni, said in a statement that she and the McCormicks were all on the same page in their desire to make an honest video.

"The McCormicks, their friends and family; they were just so raw and unguarded when telling their story," Maulucci said. "I applaud their bravery and am honored to have been a part of this production."

Yanni has set up a donation jar for the McCormick family in her office, and plans to match the total donations collected.

A GoFundMe page for the McCormick family raised nearly $53,000 in donations.

Source: http://www.masslive.com/living/index.ssf/2017/02/west_springfield_orthodontist_teams_up_with_paralyzed_teen_to_make_inspirational_video.html#incart_river_home