Eight years ago, Donna Benson was camping with friends at Waterton Lakes National Park in Canada when she suffered a grand mal seizure in the middle of the night. “I’d never been sick; I’d never even used sick leave!” she said. The next thing she knew, she was waking up from surgery to remove a brain tumor in a San Diego hospital.
Donna had to learn to walk and talk again. By the next year, she was running and riding a bike, albeit tentatively. In 2002, she went on to finish third in the 60-64 age group of the AARP-sponsored TriUmph Classic triathlon in Balboa Park. The following year, she won!
Benson, a former personnel supervisor at San Diego Naval Medical Center, retired in February 2004. When she’s not training, she’s learning computer skills and taking classes for acquired brain injury students at Mesa College. She also finds time to volunteer for the San Diego Brain Injury Foundation.