Like many thirteen year-old girls, Sydney Collier is horse crazy. Sydney is from Ann Arbor Michigan where she is an honor roll student in the eighth grade at Forsythe Middle School.
Sydney began riding at seven years old and at eight years old she was diagnosed with an extremely rare life-threatening medical condition called Wyburn-Mason Syndrome. This syndrome causes vascular malformations deep within one hemisphere of the brain that are inoperable, and cause many side-effects on the body.
One of the side-effects for Sydney was losing vision in the right eye and having strength and coordination issues on the left side of the body. Seeking experimental treatment for the problems she was experiencing, Sydney and her family traveled to California.
In 2007, Sydney underwent multiple staged cyberknife radiation treatment to get rid of the AVM’s. After the first set failed she had three brain surgeries in 2009. During one of the surgeries Sydney suffered a stroke causing her left side to have hemiparesis. The hemiparesis has now progressed due to the side effects from the radiation.
Sydney noted, ” Despite the physical hurdles my medical condition creates for me, I have continued to pursue my love of horseback riding. I learned about the United States Para Equestrian Association when I had my stroke, and was honored to become a member this past October during the World Equestrian Games. I hope to spread the word to other disabled riders that their dreams can come true in the elite world of horseback competitions. I hope one day to ride as well as the current members of the United States Para Equestrian Dressage team, and perhaps join them in representing our country!”
Sydney lives at home where she resides with her parents and two brothers.
For more information about Sydney please visit http://www.sydsparaquest.com