'A Real True Survivor' ... Young infirmary resident shines through broken glass

August 26, 2016
Jermaine Barnaby/Freelance Photographer Christopher Doyley refuses to be defined by his physical disability.
Jermaine Barnaby/Freelance Photographer Christopher Doyley refuses to be defined by his physical disability.

• Young infirmary resident shines through broken glass

In the prime of his life, at just 20 years old, Christopher Doyley met in a terrible accident which left him paralysed from the waist down.

He broke his neck, and his legs in several places, and was admitted in hospital for over a year, but his will to survive never wavered.

"Even though I lost everything, I've never lost sight of my dream. I'm the type of person that uses negative things to motive me. If you tell me I can't do something, I will do everything it takes to prove to you that I can do it," he said.

Today, the 31-year-old resides at the St Thomas Infirmary and is working to establish a studio to sell his innovative art pieces, which he creates from broken glass. He also plans to launch a recording studio to pursue his dreams of becoming a musician.

Doyley's art line is called Chris A.R.T.S, an acronym for A Real True Survivor, which he said fittingly describes his journey. He told THE WEEKEND STAR that he often tries not to think on the tragic incident that robbed him of his legs, but he remembers it like it was yesterday.

He recalled he had just completed a day's work as a merchandiser for a biscuit company in Kingston, and was riding his bike to his mother's house in St Thomas to get dinner when it happened.

"It happened so fast. It's like I saw it coming and couldn't do anything. As I go around the corner, this car was coming full hundred and it swerved into my lane to avoid another car. When I got the hit, I remember spinning around in the air about three times, then I hit the car top, and hit the ground," Doyley shared.

"I was still conscious. I just saw blood running in the middle of the street, and I started to cry out. Passers-by started to gather, but nobody wanted to take me up. Finally, somebody came and rushed me to the hospital. On my way, I was literally fighting to keep the life inside of me, because I could feel it coming out of me," he said.

While at the hospital, doctors initially advised Doyley's family that he would not make it. But like a true survivor, he pulled through the tragic ordeal. After spending over a year in hospital and at the rehabilitation centre, Doyley was finally discharged. However, his mother and other family members were unable to care for him in his condition, so they got him into the infirmary.


"I remember crying my eyes out when I just got here. Things just seemed so dull and bleak before I found the art,' he shared.

Doyley explained that the idea for creating the glass art pieces came to him in 2013 when he was seeking a way to show his appreciation to a group of friends who often visited him at the infirmary.

"I gave it to them and it made me feel happy inside, especially when I see the love pouring out when they received it. It just made me feel elated," he said.

After getting much encouragement from persons who admired his work, Doyley honed his craft and now sells them to visitors at the infirmary, and anyone who is interested. He recently sent over 20 pieces overseas to be sold.

"It's not how many times you fall down, it how many times you get back up," he said.

Persons wishing to purchase Doyley's work or assist in establishing his studio may contact him at 1 876 462 0216, or donate funds to his NCB account 644299465, Morant Bay branch.

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