Rachelle Friedman’s College Days Before Her Spinal Cord Injury

Rachelle loved her school.

Editor’s Note: Sometimes when people are having their greatest successes or are about to experience happiness seems to be when tragedy occurs. However, the individuals who persevere, who endure and who decide that they won’t let their accidents or disabilities overcome them will prevail. One of the biggest concerns when tragedy strikes often is, “Will my love one still loved me?” This week we will find out what one young lady, Rachelle Friedman Chapman from Knightdale, North Carolina, discovered about true love. Part 1 of a 5 part series. 

Rachelle Friedman was a varsity cheerleader in high school, played tennis in the summer and worked as an umbrella rental girl at Virginia Beach in Virginia. “That was a great job,” Rachelle recalls. “I would rent umbrellas, take them out and set them up on the beach for customers. The rest of the day I could have fun on the beach.” During the school year, she was really bogged down with school, work and sports, and didn’t have time for a boyfriend. Rachelle graduated from high school in 2004 and chose to go to college at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina “I fell in love with East Carolina University and was obsessed with everything about college.  The mascot was a pirate, and I was 100% pirate. I never missed a football game and attended all the sports events. I had considered being a marine biologist or possibly an archaeologist; however, when I met with my college guidance counselor, she was majoring in recreation management and told me what the curriculum included. I had been in sports all my life, and I thought recreation management was a really cool major. I thought being in charge of recreational facilities and sports programs was meant for me. So, I was 100% into this major.

Rachelle never had dated, but during her freshman year in college, she met Chris Chapman at a party. Chris was also from Virginia Beach but they never met until they both went to college. He used to go to Rachelle’s dad’s Army-Navy store and her grandmother only lived a few blocks from Chris’s family’s store. As Rachelle recalls, “I actually wasn’t very interested in Chris. I was interested in another guy. So, we became good friends. I viewed him like a big brother. We would play sports together and go to the rec center on campus. We were both really competitive. Chris also had a girlfriend, and she never had a problem with Chris and me doing things, because my focus wasn’t on Chris.” Chris broke up with his girlfriend in April of Rachelle’s freshman year. “That summer, Chris, and I got an apartment with two other friends,” Rachelle says. “Chris was just my best friend and someone I could talk to. I’d never had a boyfriend, so I really didn’t know what the dating scene involved. When Chris stared showing an interest in me, I didn’t know how to handle that.”

Chris was her best friend in college

Chris was her best friend in college

To learn more about Rachelle Friedman Chapman, go to www.rachellefriedman.com or www.facebook.com/rachelleandchris.

Next: Rachelle Friedman Finds The One 

 

About the Author: For the last 12 years, John E. Phillips of Vestavia, Alabama, has been a professional blogger for major companies, corporations and tourism associations throughout the nation. During his 24 years as Outdoor Editor for “The Birmingham Post-Herald” newspaper, he published more than 7,000 newspaper columns and sold more than 100,000 of his photos to newspapers, magazines and internet sites. He also hosted a radio show that was syndicated at 27 radio stations; created, wrote and sold a syndicated newspaper column that ran in 38 newspapers for more than a decade; and wrote and sold more than 30 books. Learn more at http://www.nighthawkpublications.com

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