Musician, Knoxville native and former “American Idol” hopeful David Francisco has joined the Tennessee Highway Safety Office, Tennessee Highway Patrol and Walk Bike Nashville for a campaign against distracted driving.
Francisco moved to Nashville in 2016 to pursue a career in music. Just three weeks later, a distracted driver ran a red light and T-boned Francisco on his bicycle. He suffered severe spinal injuries and doctors said he’d never walk again, but through persistence and physical therapy, he has regained the ability to walk.
He made it to the Hollywood round on “American Idol” but was eliminated prior to group auditions.
Francisco appears in a public service announcement video talking about his experiences and urging people not to text and drive.
“Last year, we experienced 24,781 distracted-driving crashes statewide,” said THSO Director Vic Donoho. “120 of those crashes were fatal. We were in awe of David’s remarkable recovery and resilience, because his crash certainly could’ve been fatal.”
Francisco will perform in Knoxville on April 6, 7 and 8 at Rhythm n Blooms Music Festival.
Francisco is also taking part in a 500 mile bike ride starting in Southern California from June 22 to July 3. It benefits research for people like Francisco with spinal cord injuries.
He will be riding a tandem bike with his wife on the 12 day journey.