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What happened to Michael Schumacher?
On the 29th of December in 2013 Michael Schumacher was skiing, the accident site was in Méribel, France when he fell in an off-piste area hitting his head against a rock. He had a helmet on but the impact was strong enough to cause very serious head injuries. Schumacher was quickly transported to Grenoble hospital by a helicopter where he had 2 surgeries to remove blood and relieve pressure from the brain and was put into a medically induced coma. Six months later in June of 2014, he was awakened from the coma and flew back to Switzerland where he started his rehabilitation journey. First in Lausanne’s University Hospital and from September he went home to his family.
After the crash, people speculated that the GoPro mount that was on the tops of his helmet might have had an impact on the seriousness of his injury. Subsequently, the value of the company dropped by 20%. The force of the impact against the rock was so strong that the helmet got split into 2 pieces.
Before the accident, he saw one of his friend’s daughters needed help and wanted to go and help her, that’s where he lost control of the skis and fell. He was spending time with his son Mick and a couple of friends.
He got help 4 minutes after the skiing accident, he couldn’t understand questions and his answers were unclear. The movement of his limbs was also irregular.
Details about his medical state have always been kept very private by his family, which is to protect Michael and to avoid any unwanted attention. From time to time people have updated on his condition. In 2014 Philippe Streiff said that Schumacher is paralyzed and has to use a wheelchair to move and he can’t speak. For the next couple of years, his condition stayed relatively the same with small steps of improvement. He would cry when hearing the voices of his children or wife and when looking at the mountains around his home.
Michael Schumacher accident: condition now
Michael is paralyzed and after many treatments, he still can’t really speak or move without the wheelchair. Doctors didn’t give any hope that he would fully recover and will most likely spend the rest of his life without the ability to get on on his own. But he has still made great progress taking into account the severity of his accident and that he spent time in a coma.
In the past years, he went under pioneering stem cell treatment by Philippe Menasché. Jean Todt has said, he would watch Formula 1 races on TV with him and that he is making good progress but has to be careful with his statements. in August of 2021 Bernie Eccelstone said that Michael might one day be able to answer any questions himself in the future. He has since also suffered from muscle atrophy and osteoporosis because he is unable to move his body and is still confined to beds and wheelchairs. One of his doctors, Nicola Acciari said: “The goal is to regenerate Michael’s nervous system.” While making small steps of progress it is impossible to say how much he can recover. Brain injuries are always unpredictable and since he spent a lot of time in a coma it is another factor that needs to be counted as it affects his condition greatly.
The family has bought a villa in Majorca, a Spanish island where he also has caretakers. It is a warmer weather home compared to his swiss house and he spends time there occasionally. It is better suited for the recovery of Schumacher and has a pleasant climate and access to good healthcare professionals.
His legacy in Formula 1
Michael Schumacher (born on the 3rd of January 1968) is one of the greatest Formula 1 drivers ever, having won 7 championships which is only equaled by Lewis hamilton. He won a Grand Prix 91 times in total and gathered 155 podiums. He was the dominating force in F1 in the early 2000s similar to how Mercedes has been fending off rivals in the past years.
He started his journey in Jordan, where in the 1991 Belgian GP he was the replacement driver for Bertrand Gachot. He managed an impressive qualifying session placing the car in 7th position. His skills were quickly seen by everyone and he became the talk of the paddock. He was quickly snatched up by the Benetton team to drive for the rest of the season even though he also had a seat in the Jordan team. The next year in 1992 at the Belgian GP he got his first win and in 1994 and 1995 he got his first Driver’s Championships. From 1996 to 2005 he drove for Ferrari where he had a legendary stay and garnered up 5 more titles for himself. In the years 2010-12, he briefly made a comeback driving for the Mercedes F1 Team, where he would later be replaced by Lewis.
Michael set the bar high for all the other world champions that have come after him. He was the most determined and hard-working sportsman to enter F1 at that time. He went through all the details and gathered all the knowledge there was about the cars and driving. He was a force of fury, he had an aggressive driving style that was feared by many and he didn’t let anything to chance, he was always giving his 100% in every situation. It is known from his racing mentality that even though the Michael Schumacher accident was very hard, his spirit and strength will keep fighting.
This year a Netflix documentary was released about him, where his family and friends comment about his upbringing, racing career and relevant topics. How he started in Jordan as a rookie to went on to have legendary battles. His rivalry with Mika Häkkinen and important championship-deciding races like the Japanese GP in 2000.
Michael was also very protective of his family and private life and now his family does everything to protect him and make sure he is comfortable. Privacy is important because “friends” of the family have tried to take advantage of the situation, for example by trying to sell pictures of him after the accident for 1 million dollars which hurt the family a lot. Other times, people would claim fake pictures depicting him and his family. Schumacher suffered a lot because of the crash and their family deserves all the respect and privacy they need and want.
His son Mick is now an F1 driver himself driving for Haas. His wife Corinna is constantly looking after him and he also has a daughter, Gina. His brother Ralf was also an F1 racer, driving the bigger part of his career for BMW Williams and Toyota.
Despite Michael Schumacher’s accident and a worsened condition, he will always be remembered as a true legend of the F1 world. We wish him the best on his journey of recovery.