John became a staunch advocate for wear-a-helmet programs after the accident that would change his life. While bicycling downhill, a car pulled in front of him—resulting in a collision in which he was propelled through a windshield at 38 miles an hour. He was not wearing a helmet. As a result of the accident, he suffered a brain injury that caused severe short-term memory loss, speech and vision problems, and partial paralysis on his left side. He walks with a cane.