The Soldier and the Squirrel introduces children to the Purple Heart

through a loving story of a friendship between a newly wounded soldier

and Rocky the squirrel with his backyard friends. This story began as a

blog during my first year in bed after my incident. With much

encouragement, it is now a book and has been placed in the

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum. Please watch the video

on the About page to learn for the Soldier & Rocky are changing children's






Glorious Rejoice Dots Glitter





Subscribe to the Fried Nerves and Jam Podcast!

« Reggie & Me | Main | Aloha & Mahalo - Today's Spinal Update »

Grass Roots 

Grass Roots Fundraiser Set Up To Help Micaela Bensko
Thu, 07/18/2013 - 3:07pm | David Mariuz
Santa Clarita News

The friends and family of Micaela Bensko, a local veteran’s advocate and writer who was disabled in a driveway accident, recently set up a charity to help pay for her out of pocket expenses.

“It’s moving,” said Bensko, “People are so generous and kind.”

The expenses of her care are at least $3,000 a month not counting medical bills. The fundraiser's goal is to reach $50,000 in the next 121 days, and they are nearly 10 percent of the way there.

In 2011, Bensko was injured in a driveway accident caused by the hatch of her car’s tailgate collapsing on her skull.

“I went to the emergency room and they put a staple in my head,” Bensko said.

Bensko has undergone testing, scans and MRIs. In May 2012 she had an artificial disk replacement in her cervical area, a laminotomy, a microdiscectomy and a bone spur removal.

That summer, she suffered a herniation in her spine, which resulted in additional surgery in the fall.

“Throughout this process my limbs have weakened,” said Bensko, “Due to the trauma to my spinal cord, my neurology is like a hornets nest.”

Overtime Bensko has lost mobility in her left leg, and her right leg is beginning to lose mobility as well.

Bensko uses a wheelchair or an electric scooter for transportation, but is in bed the majority of each day.

Bensko has at least two upcoming surgeries. One of which is an electro spine stimulator implant, a device that sends electrical impulses along the spine to control chronic pain.

“I have had multiple surgeries and endless procedures,” Bensko said.

She also must undergo rhizotomies, a surgery that targets painful nerves in the spine, and she just applied to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. for treatment.

Bensko has been productive despite the difficulties caused by her disability.

“It’s been one of the most creative period of my life,” Bensko said.

Bensko wrote a children’s book called “The Soldier and the Squirrel.” The story is about a wounded soldier that affects the life of a squirrel who lives in his backyard.

“The moral of the story is that life is about making others happy,” Bensko said.

The book is illustrated by Stephanie Orehek and will be published in two months.

Bensko is Vice-President of Rebuilding America's Warriors, which provides free reconstructive surgery to wounded troops returning from war.

Bensko and her husband have four children.

She also writes editorials for

To donate visit the page for Micaela’s Health Challenge.

Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or drop us a line at


Fundraiser Set Up To Help Micaela Bensko
Article: Fundraiser Set Up To Help Micaela Bensko
Source: Santa Clarita News
Author: David Mariuz

Printer-friendly version | Tags: Micaela BenskocharityFundraiserMicaela's Health ChallengeMoana VidaBloggerVeteran's AdvocateRebuilding America's Warriors
About David Mariuz

View More By This Author

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>