Gridiron Heroes Spinal Cord Injury Foundation was formed in 2003
with a specific mission: To provide immediate, as well as, long term resources
and support to individuals sustaining catastrophic spinal cord injury through
activities associated with high school
On November 2, 2001, Chris Canales, a senior defensive back
playing for San Marcos Baptist Academy, sustained a spinal cord injury during
the fourth quarter of his final regular season game.
Chris lay motionless on the field for 19 minutes. The next three weeks,
Chris fought for his life. The
following months he battled through rehabilitation trying to gain movement and
learning how to function as a quadriplegic. Chris’ injury and the lack of any
organized support system for families prompted his father, Eddie Canales, the
Canales family, and former coach Mike Kipp to begin discussions about the
desperate need for an organization for families who were forced to deal with the
consequences of this devastating
In November of 2002, Chris and Eddie were in attendance at the
Texas 3A State Championship football game in the Alamodome, in San Antonio. There they witnessed another spinal
cord injury. This time it was
Everman defensive back, Corey Fulbright.
Chris turned to his Dad and said, “We need to go and help them. I know what he (Corey) is going to go
through, and you know what the family will have to go through.”
Inspired by the compassion of Chris, Eddie and Mike Kipp formed Gridiron
Heroes Spinal Cord Injury Foundation.
Articles of Incorporation were filed in February of 2003, and a 501(C) 3
Tax exempt status was obtained in May of the same year. Through a grant written
by Eddie & his dad, Coach Robert M. Canales, funds received helped kick-off
its first year.
Receiving calls from other states has shown a need for the work
that is being done. Gridiron
Heroes has taken step towards helping others nationwide.
There have been others who suffered this similar injury in the past. Unfortunately and inevitably there will
be more. Rest assured that
Gridiron Heroes will be there for the next family who finds themselves in this
President Ron Booker
P.O. Box 507
Director Eddie Canales