Stories of Inspiration


Sean Canepa-
"I am no different than anybody else"

Sean has captured our hearts over the past few years as we see him off to camp every August and watch his interaction with other children at Camp Susquehanna in June. He rises to be a leader with the younger children and is much loved by the counselors and his peers. We are very proud of him. He wants to be a motivational speaker and he is an inspiration to others. We will let him share his story in his own words, in his documentary "Normal", Second place in the Documentary Category of the 2011 Greenfield Youth Film Festival.

"Normal" by Sean Canepa

 Sean CanepaSean Canepa 

 Sean has been all over the news recently! Here are just a few of the articles telling his story and inspiring message:

 The flame that burns within. 23 October 2011.

 Teen burn victim doesn't hide behind disfigurements. 19 October 2011. WCAU/NBC

A story to inspire awe. By Ronnie Polaneczky. 13 October 2011. The Philadelphia Daily News


Everett Marshall, Burn Found.

Everett Marshall-
Nothing is Impossible to a Willing Heart

Everett Marshall, 57, former mayor of Newfield, N.J. and owner of a N.J based trucking company, was severely burned when a petroleum-transporter tank that he was cleaning exploded. Marshall was thrown from the truck during the explosion and landed on his back inside the molten-hot truck bed. He sustained burns over 50 percent of his body and broke both of his legs. Despite his injuries, Marshall pushed himself backwards out of the trailer. He recalls, “My legs were broken and my left foot was going in the wrong direction and I said, ‘I’m not going to die like this’.”

As a burn patient and amputee, Marshall spent three months in intensive care at Temple University Hospital. After multiple skin grafts to replace about two to three inches of his back that was missing, Marshall was transferred from the ICU to Temple's Level I Burn Unit. His road to recovery has been a long one, but his attitude and determination has been remarkable. According to Marshall, “Three things that have been very powerful for me in this adventure have been my family, faith and trust in the people around me [therapists, doctors and friends]. I really do not believe that I could have made the progress that I have without my family. Having them with me everyday and knowing they are all in my corner for recovery keeps me moving in a positive direction.”

Currently a Board Member for the Burn Foundation, Marshall is an inspiration of what can be done if you set your mind to it and never give up. Marshall's message continues to give hope to burn survivors and has helped develop a sense of awareness in our communities about fire and burn injury and prevention. With the help of his family, Marshall organizes an annual golf tournament with proceeds benefiting the Burn Foundation. The success of his tournament last year raised over $10,000 for the Burn Foundation.

For more information on Everett Marshall's recovery:
DeBevois, K. (2006). Burning Issues: A patient's experience heats up useful tips for burn unit therapists. Therapy Times. Retrieved May 14, 2007 from

Carol Gadsden -
Finding Hope in Tough Circumstances

Thirty years ago, Gadsden entered her bathroom to take what should have been a routine shower in her apartment building in New York. Suddenly, the equipment in place to regulate the water temperature malfunctioned and the water scalded her body. Skin exposed to 160 degree water for only one second, can result in a third degree burn. Gadsden was exposed to 180 degree water temperatures. In an instant she became burnt over 70% of her body. Diagnosed with third-degree burns over 50% of her body (20% with first and second-degree burns), Gadsden required treatment for six months and lost use of both her legs and arms. The third-degree burns caused extensive tissue damage, disfigurement and loss of function.

Since the accident, Gadsden has endured 33 surgeries. As a burn survivor, she understands the pain and effects of burn injuries, but shows that burn survivors can return to productive and healthy lives. Gadsden, a Board Member for the Burn Foundation, continues to share her story in hopes of preventing burn injury and in an effort to keep the community informed and safe in their homes.

Hot Issue


Paul A. Jargowsky, Ph.D. 

We were privileged to have Professor Paul A. Jargowsky, of the Rutgers University Center for Urban Research and Urban Education, as our guest speaker at our 39th Annual Gala on October 19, 2012.  

At the age of 15, Paul sustained burns over 70% of his body.  At that time, the chances of recovery from such extensive burns were remote, but Paul was fortunate to receive care at the newly opened Crozer-Chester Burn Center.  He made an amazing recovery and went on to graduate from Princeton and Harvard (masters and doctoral).  

Paul showed tremendous courage through his recovery and has devoted much of his life to serving others.   His bravery and inspiration of others are shining examples of the qualities that we are fortunate to see in many of our burn survivors.


The Burn Foundation Fall, 2012 newsletter has been published!

Click here to download a copy. To request a copy by mail,
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