Former surfer to give talk about living life to fullest after accident

By Hala Ali Aryan

April 30, 2003

POWAY - Former surfer Jesse Billauer, who became a quadriplegic after a surfing accident, will tell his story of recovery and living life to the fullest in a talk tonight.

Billauer, now a San Diego State University student, suffered a spinal cord injury in 1996. He lost use of his body below the chest and has limited use of his arms. Prior to his accident, he had been an avid athlete in several sports, including surfing, water and snow skiing, snowboarding, baseball, soccer and roller hockey.

Since his injury, he has gone skydiving, surfing, water skiing, inner tubing, and has played wheelchair tennis, Ping-Pong, and competed in a billiards tournament. He has traveled to France, Mexico, Spain, Italy and numerous places in the United States.

Billauer has not missed a Pipeline Masters and has attended the Association of Surfing Professionals awards banquet each year. He spoke at the banquet in 2000. He recently presented an award for the Best Male Performance at the 29th Annual Surfer Poll Awards.

His presentation is at 7 p.m. in the youth center at the Lutheran Church of the Incarnation, 16889 Espola Road, Poway. It will be geared toward middle-and high-school youth and intended to impress upon them the fragility of life and the need to appreciate the benefits of healthy living, church officials said. He will pose ethical questions to provoke thought and teach values and respect for family, friends, strangers and self.

For more information, call Ron Stebenne at (858) 487-2225.

Hala Aryan: (760) 476-8235;

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