Is 22 years old, born with multiple handipcaps and she has to rely on help in her daily life. At 17, she discovered her love for BVB. Everything started to revolve uniquely around players, football and broadcast times. Birthdays and Christmas presents were all BVB presents. A BVB birthday cake, BVB dishes and garlands. The world turned black and yellow. A autistic girl with spectrum disorder and selective mutism was suddenly speaking. Whether somebody declared himself a BVB fan through his clothing or whether Jo was addressed because of her way of dressing. Autism – mutism- what is that? Suddenly, she held discussions with bearded men with long hair and tabooed bikers or people driving in a Mercedes with designer clothes, Bavaria fans and doctors. For Jo-Marie, BVB opened the door to her very personal Narnia!
Since Traiskirchen is almost 1000km away from Dortmund it was almost impossible to get tickets and the money was barely enough, it seemed hopeless to ever have a chance to get to Dortmund and experience a BVB match live. Her dear aunt then wrote to ‘Make a Wish’ and mentioned Jo-Marie’s great wish. And indeed they enabled her to get to the favourite stadium! 5 days in Dortmund with secret training, a guided tour of the stadium, a match and meeting Emma. She smiled on every picture and let players put their arm over her shoulders. Until then, for 18 years, one could only touch Jo-Marie in a few exceptions!
Jo was on cloud 9 and wanted to remain in Dortmund for ever. The closeness to her BVB made her strong!
All of this destroyed an aneurysm that almost cost her life! Due to a number of lucky circumstances she survived the brain haemorrhage, the consecutive swelling of the brain, the pneumonia, partial paralysis and the tracheostoma that enabled her to breathe.
When she reopened her eyes after a long suspended animation, her first partial, crocked smile elicited a picture of Roman Bürki. Roman Bürki is her favourite goal keeper and her mother hung the BVB calendar and many pictures in the intensive care room. A nurse attached the pictures on the operation lamp above her so that she could see them. Her mother read relentlessly stories from BVB books, magazines and placed the pictures and played the videos right in front of her face. The intensive care team organised an old TV set for Jo-Marie so that she may watch the matches.
Jo-Marie overcame all and fought herself back to life! She learnt to breathe, to speak, to sit and to walk again – with unshakeable ambition and a huge target. Because she wanted to return to the stadium! The wheelchair was now her constant companion. During the long rehabilitation program her love to BVB helped her in a special way. The therapists used her love to BVB to encourage her to achieve the highest performance possible. 9 month after the brain haemorrhage Jo-Marie was able to walk ‘straight; into her favourite stadium in Dortmund!
Jo-Marie still needs to be operated on 2 more aneurysms. But with the help of her passion to BVB she will be able to overcome this as well!