The Kimberley Public Library will have a special guest on May 27 between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. when author Jennifer De Pippo visits to talk about her book “An Unexpected Miracle, Conquering Brain Injury”.
De Pippio, 26, lives in Cranbrook, and has been in the East Kootenay for about 10 years.
Her connection to Kimberley is through her great friend Bill Roberts. Roberts, who wrote “Best Miners in the World: Stories from Canada’s Sullivan Mine” says he ran into De Pippio when he was working in the gym with some Special Olympics athletes.
“This young woman came in and we started chatting,” Roberts said. “She told me she was in a car accident when she was seven. Her mother was killed and she was in a coma for a couple of months. She spent years in rehab. I asked her about it and she told me about being picked on at school. Kids wouldn’t play with her so she just started studying. She knows four languages, her IQ is 140. You have a hard time saying she’s disabled.”
After several conversations, De Pippio confided in Roberts that she would like to write a book about her experience with brain injury.
Roberts had a few contacts from writing his own book and hooked her up with someone in publishing in Victoria, who helped her write it. But he says De Pippio did most of the writing, it’s her story.
De Pippio is now training as a swimmer, her ultimate goal being the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.
“She’s working really hard,” Roberts said. “She’s a very determined young lady and I’m very proud of her. She’s a real role model.”