Road victim shares his pain

INJURED: Joel De Munk spoke to students in Bendigo about the impact of trauma.

INJURED: Joel De Munk spoke to students in Bendigo about the impact of trauma.

JOEL De Munk hopes young people will make the right decisions after hearing his story.

Mr De Munk was 33 when he was hit by a car in 2006 and left a paraplegic.

“I blame myself,” he said.

“Certainly the driver had a percentage of involvement, but if I was a smart person I wouldn’t have walked out in front of the car.”

The former chef shared his experiences with about 250 students as part of a program aimed at preventing trauma.

“It gives them a bit of education as to what happens after an injury, which most people don’t know,” he said.

"My life has changed immensely."

TAC data shows 1,121 people have been hospitalised after car crashes in the Bendigo region since 2000, and 229 people have been killed since 1987.

Student Neal Gunn heard Mr De Munk’s story and said it was confronting.

“He said that he never every thought it would happen to him, but it has happened,” Neal said.

“It just shows everyone is vulnerable  and it shows it’s important to be careful.”

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