A. Joseph Benintende III, LPA, (Joe B. Benintende) is originally from New Orleans, Lousisana and has been involved in music directly since he was about 7 years old. As a small child legendary guitarist Johnny Rivers, mother lived next door and Joe would sit for hours watching and listening to Johnny play acoustic guitar on the porch with the other kids in the neighborhood, this was in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He was able to get his first guitar shortly after, when his Mom found an old warped acoustic guitar in a local music store's clearance sale. The strings were about a 1/4 from the neck and if you are not a guitasr player, that is a huge distance and makes playing extremely difficult, however, but not knowing any better and learning on this old Harmony acoustic, Joe soon learned playing a good guitar was much easier than most, as he believed then that first neck was how all guitars were. From that point on the music field would always impact Joes life.
Joe's father was with a national phone company and his family got transferred about every 2 years growing up, mostly in Lousisana and Alabama towns, but the various people in those places each played a key role in his career developing like it did. However, music was not an accepted way of making aliving in the Benintende homw and most of the time, his father felt if there was enough time to learn guitar,m there was more time available to study other things, like science, langauges or chemistry. JOe learnd those things, but stayed true to his dreams. Here is an example, when living in Birmingham, Alabama in 4th grade, Joes neighborhood friend AL, had an older brother who moved away to New Orleans to work in the only concert venue in New Orleans at the time, the Warehouse, literally an old Riverfront Warehouse on the Mississippi River. Years later at the age of 16, now back living outside of New Orleans Joe took some of his friends and they went to the Warehouse looking for Cecil, Al's older brother, never expected to find him, but 16 year old know it alls, did not think of that. That night was the premiere live concert of Peter Frampton Comes Alive Tour, everyone remembers that album ! ! ! As Joe and his friends pulled up to Warehouse, there were scores of people lined up around building, waiting to get in. Not knowing better, Joe and his friends, went stratight to the door and asked for Cecil, knowing what I know now, I am sure he was in the middle of an hellacious load in as this show was huge. But he came to the door and VEREY SURPRISED to see his little brother sfriend standing there, actually invited up in and gave us backstage passes and as I was standing in hallway in back stage, Framptons Road Mgr. thought I was one of the local crew and put me to work stamping passes for the day, media, backstage, etc. Had never even been to a concert, but was now stamping backstage passes, he was so hooked at that exact second.
That lead to an incredible professional life first with Encore Entertainment, then with New Era Promotions, then LIVE NATION working with almost every major music artist you could possibly name for over 20 years, up until that day, that El Camino crashed into the back of him at that Red Light leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. At that moment life change forever for Joe as he felt like he was plummeted into the deepest darkest hole ever seen by mankind. Everything in Joe's life came to a screeching halt, career, family, friends, all seemed to vanish, with the exception of his incredible gift from GOD, Angel his Black Labrador who went through Everything with Joe, never leaving his side, Angel went from being firsT the best k9 companion you could ask for, but as ANGEL had an explosives detection background he was then taught to detect Joe's serious drops in blood pressure, before those drops occurred, keeping Joe from possibly losing consciousness. Angel simply placed his head on Joe's knee and Joe knew to adjust the postion of his body immediately to equalize his overall blood pressure. Angel never failed Joe. For many years Joe searched out resources. First resources for a cure or some kind of treatment to help him get better and time after time and considerable expense, the only thing he learned from his medical appointments and evaluations was that, he would probably be in the chair, the rest of his entire life and the sooner he accepted that,t he sooner he would feel better. Joe could just never quite wrap his head around, then searching for resources that would make living in a chair as socialy interchangeable as possible as Joe did not want to stay confined to a room in a chair without being able to get out into the world and keep going. He learned that getting on Disability is a real chore and takes money and a lot of time, meanwhile there is no way to pay bills, the mortgage company does not really care if you are confined to a chiar, they just want their bill paid. Then you learn that only certain types of wheelchairs, ones that were not prescribed for Joe, could be tossed into a vehicle so you could go and without use of legs or feet, there was no way to control a vehicle, Joe was able to finally find a wheelchair Van a used 2005 Dodge Ram Caravan, it was an awesome van, a really awesome van, it had room, his chair fit easily and better yet, it had hand controls, he could now brake and accelerate with my hands only, not feet required. I went EVERYWHERE, ALL THE TIME, WAS JUST GOING AND GOING AND GOING. This van had removeable front seats, so without the passenger seat in, Angel has a nice flat space to ride on and he also went everywhere Joe went, if you saw Joe, Angel was not far away, ever, they were quite a pair.
All of this went on for over 6 years, road block after road block and a small success here and there. Then one day, while volunteering at a local mens transitional home for alcoholism/addiction, actally working with another paraplegic whose accident and injuries had also lead to some serious narcotic addictions and the boys brother asked Joe to sepak with him, cause maybe since hee too was paralyzed, maybe he would listen. But one day while Joe was visiting this person, his cell phone rang and on the other end was another old time friend from 20 some odd years ago, the voice was loud, almost screamiong, you have to get down here to Tamps or St. Pete right away, we just met a guy that heals paralyzed people, you have to get here right away. WHAT ????? Of course Joe believed his friend had fallen victim to a scam and he told her that, as they continued to sepak. Joes friend convinced him to at least call the man and speak to him, which he is stil not sure, that conversation convinced him he had nothing to lose. HIs friend told him about Ken Bryant, a man with a physcial therapy and Reflexology background, who had basically been treating paralyzed people for something else and began to notice they were moving, when they were not suppose to. After this first phone call, which his other paralyzed friend in the other wheelchair had listened to as well. Joe said, I just got the weirdest phone call, the other guy, said I heard, give me the guys number I will go and within days, this other guy and one of his family members was in Tampa being treated by Ken Bryant. His firt day there, they sent back video of his foot pushing down a drum pedal with a foot he had not been able to move or feel for 9 years. Joe now knew he had to get there, but still just the cost of driving to Tampa which was 14 hours away for a whole week was overwhelming and seemed unachievable, he built a spreadsheet to cost out everything, how much would gas be, how much was food, lodging, everything he absolutely had to have to get there and back safely and after a week, he was still $400 short of his projected goal amount from his spreadsheet and he almost decided maybe it was not GODs will since he could not raise the money, but instantly something snapped and he took off, even with the shortage of funds, he and Angel headed to TAMPA.
Long story short, Ken Bryant treated him from that Monday until that Friday and Joe heade back to Birmingham, with video, VIDEO of him MOVING, he could move the tips of his toes and his knees barely, bit by little bit, by little bit, other little parts began to move. Joe found some excercises at his local gym, that were similar to what Ken Bryant used and just focused on gaining movement, little tiny movements, sometimes, so slow, they had to be noticed in hind sight. That was October 2015.
Joe was hired to take over the legendary music venue in Birmingham called WorkPlay and almost before he knew itm he was walking and walking, it took along while, but it finally got there. Joe has non stop pursued folks ithe medical field and other fields tohelp discover, how this same treatment may be offered to may people cross the country and even thoughm he has not made the progress he would like. He and Ken Bryant continue helping as many paralyzed folks as they can, untitl that time, it is discovered as to how to spread this to more people.
The story began getting out on the internet from Joe's own telephone video camera, as he had video'd as much as possible, so he could study later and he then began to post his progress to folks and many, many people began to follow his progress on line.
This month (April of 2017) Ken Brynt came to Birmingham to treat patient that had seen Joe's video, but was unable to travel to Florida for the treatment. THis was first time Ken and Joe had seen each other since Joe was first treatred, it was a very special day for Joe. During this week really strange twist began to happen, a lady who is writing a movie about Joes life, came to town and the reporter that released the first big online article was there, Joe's personal physician was there and out of the blue, this family from Florence Alabama heard Ken was coming and drove to Bham to see of they could meet Ken. They have an adorable 8 yr old quadraplegic son, named Hayden and Ken instantly agreed to work with him, so every night at 7 pm at WorkPlay, the family, the boy, Ken, Joe and the others observing how Ken works, this little boy began to change before their very eyes and was able to remove his respirator tube, move his hands, really moving and to see the young boy light up at this movement was truly life changing. A total of 4 other people appeared and were treated and as always every single one of them got tremendous results. Everyone involved in my life, who never could quite understand how I was treated, got to see it first hand on these other people and even though I have been through it, it is more than amazing to witness it everytime.
The MIRACLE of Walking by once paraplegic Joe Benintende