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CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — It’s an injury you may have never thought possible: a fractured skull from a hair tie. But it happened to one little girl right here in the Cape Fear, and it may be more common than you think.

“I fell on a hair accessory and had a head injury,” said seven-year-old Mya Bartlett.

Mya doesn’t like to talk about the accident that fractured her skull and left her with traumatic brain damage. It happened on April 8, 2010. She was kicking a soccer ball, fell backward and hit her head. The Hello Kitty ponytail holder she was wearing damaged her fragile skull.

“As the doctors said, it was as if she had a rock and a knife in her head when she fell,” Mya’s mom Tristen Waters said. “The rock was the plastic, and the corners and edges acted as a knife.”

Waters said she thought it was a freak accident, but after doing some research, she learned that injuries from hair accessories are fairly common, especially for girls who are very active.

“Girls under the age of 14, their head is still growing and developing,” Mya’s sister Kyra said.

Kyra is Mya’s sister and business partner. That’s right, this duo is turning an injury into an investment; an investment in the lives of little girls around the world. They are making and selling safe hair accessories.

“They got no plastic and no metal,” Mya said.

Mya and Kyra design and sew the bows themselves, with a little help from mom. Waters says Mya struggles with ADD, ADHD and memory loss among other things as a result of the injury. But she’s proud that her girls are helping to prevent similar problems one hair bow at a time.

“The product that they are making is going to save lives,” Waters said. “And because it’s saving lives, they are saving the world.”

The girls used the money they made from the bows and bands to pay for summer camp. Now they are deciding what charity to help out with the rest of the money they made.

Mya and Kyra’s ‘Safer Hair Accessories’ have been chosen to be featured on MSN’s segment “Kids Saving the World.”

Comment on this Story

  • Truth Sets U Free

    Both web sites have been shut down and the family left the area, literally moving in the middle of the night.
    Looks like the scam has run its course.
    I rest my case.

  • Truth Sets U Free

    What is sorry is that the parents, and especially the mother are using this child for personal gain. They should be reported for child exploitation.

  • Truth Sets U Free

    First, take the emotion out and look at the facts. You don’t live here. You know only what your brother wants you to see, or what you choose to see. Those living in the neighborhood know what is really going on.
    Sometimes the truth isn’t pretty. That doesn’t make it any less truthful.

  • Gabrielle Bartlett

    I am Auntie to these 2 wonderful girls, Mya Joy and Kyra. I am so proud of them for starting their own business to make their own hair accessories. This gives them safe hair accessories that they can wear and they are also selling them so other little girls can have safe hair accessories too. (IF THEY CAN MAKE SAFE HAIR ACCESSORIES, THEN WHY CAN’T CHINA DO IT?!) Everyone wants any little girl they have in their life to be safe and not to have to worry about them getting a brain injury from a hair accessory. So kudos to you girls for all of your hard work!!!
    My brother, Armon Bartlett, and Tristen started a non-profit organization called Light of Joy Awareness (http://lightofjoyawareness.com/) to help raise money and awareness about brain injuries and also to share their story in the hopes that no other parents will go through what they went through.
    I am appalled and outraged at all the negative comments people posted about this story! Some of the comments left are from people who claim to live in Armon’s own neighborhood in NC. These are ignorant people who think they know Armon and his family but they really don’t know them at all or else they wouldn’t say these terrible things that aren’t true. People are so ignorant!! (Some people are confusing the non-profit organization called Light of Joy Awareness with the for-profit business called Safer Hair Accessories so they think my brother used money from the non-profit to send the girls to camp but that is not what happened. Again, people not knowing what they’re talking about and jumping to wrong conclusions.)
    I’m not going to refute every ridiculous comment made by these mean people because they don’t deserve to be dignified with an answer. People are going to believe what they want to believe and I doubt I could persuade them to change their closed minds by something like facts and the truth. But myself and my family know the truth and that’s all that matters. In the end it doesn’t matter what other people think. But to all the people putting their nasty comments on here: SHAME ON YOU for commenting on a story when you don’t even know what you’re talking about!!! Didn’t your parents teach you any manners?! If you don’t have anything nice to say then you shouldn’t say anything at all! So keep all your nasty comments to yourself…no one else wants to hear them!

  • Kathleen Campbell

    Dear Mya Joy and family,

    We am sorry that you have to see all of these insensitive, hurtful comments left by anonymous posters. My brother is a traumatic brain injury survivor as well, and struggles with his attention span, memory and focus. We wish you and your sister all of the success in the world with your business venture. Thank you for your efforts to prevent injuries like this to other children. The world needs more compassionate people like you!

    The Campbell Family
    Londonderry, NH

  • Jmbbt

    Your just an idiot

  • amcg77

    You are all a sorry excuse of a human being!! How dare you bad mouth a LITTLE GIRL who is just trying to help others like herself. Maybe some of you need the story written in Brail for you can CLEARLY not read words in front of your face. Where the heck do you see a word that even comes close to looking like “tennis”? Soccer surely doesn’t!!
    Wear helmet?? Really?? Do you put a helmet on your kids every time you send them out to play ? No you don’t!! This was a freak accident that unfortunately damaged a little girl for life!!
    What’s so bad about home school? There are THOUSANDS of activities out there for home schooled kids to be a part of so there are NO opportunities passing them by! Maybe its a good idea to read up on something before you make yourself look like an ass! (Google is great for research… try it sometime). These girls (and their family) are so proud of themselves for doing something helpful for themselves and others!!
    THIS IS NOT A NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION!! So these girls are doing a great thing with THEIR money that they have rightfully earned, by giving back to a charity of their choice.
    I really hope nothing like this happens to you and your family… because it doesn’t sound like you would even be supportive to them!!
    Again… i feel sorry for all you negative, pathetic sorry excuses of humans!!!
    No wonder why the world is the way it is… …

  • Nicole

    People are disgusting- I see nothing in the article indicative of a scam here. No where does it say this is a non-profit organization that the girls have (being mistaken for the non-profit organization the family runs?). The fact is the child suffered a serious injury due to the construction of the hair accessory and is now making safe accessories that do not pose the same hazard and making some cash doing it- GOOD FOR HER! Why do people feel the need to trash her and her family for doing their thing and spreading awareness? Miserable people with nothing better to do I’m sure. GROW UP! Surely you have something better to do than bully children and their families- if not, I would suggest you get a life.

  • Ellie

    most if not, all service dogs are with the person their are to assist. when this family leaves home the dog is left at home. So how is the “service dog” assisting the child when the dog is at home and the child is away? another scam this family is running.

  • Mary

    This is the same woman who got a dog earlier this year, put a scarf around its neck, and announced that it was a “service dog” for her ‘disabled’ daughter.

    She certainly has a vivid imagination.

  • PT Barnum

    There’s a sucker born every minute.
    -P.T. Barnum

  • Truth Sets U Free

    You seem to be falling for their scam.

  • Ellie

    “The girls used the money they made from the bows and bands to pay for summer camp. Now they are deciding what charity to help out with the rest of the money they made”

    From Articles of Incorporation Non Profit NCSOS office
    Light of Joy Awareness: No part of the net earnings of this corporation shall inure to the benefit of , or be distributable to, its members, directors, officers, or other private persons

    This family cannot even follow the rules of their corporation.

  • Truth Sets U Free

    “Mya and Kyra design and sew the bows themselves, with a little help from mom.”

    What’s interesting about this statement is that their mother (supposedly) home schools these girls.

    Just causes one to wonder what activities are passing for home schooling at the Bartlett home.

    Also interesting how Mya “doesn’t like to talk about the accident.” I’ll bet not.

  • Friend of the Family

    I know this family personal and Mya’s focus issues and attention is a direct result of the head injury. This is not the only result of TBI. Everything this family has been through… it is amazing ALL that they do. MSN news contacted them, they didn’t call them and so many see the good work they will do. Support the family! If Kids can change the world maybe the adults will change too? Open your eyes and make a difference.

  • concerned

    Sounds like some people are confused. Some people are mistaking a non profit with the girls own charity work. Neither is tied to the other.

  • Truth Sets U Free

    The Bartlett family recently moved from North Topsail Beach to Charleston, SC.
    When they left they were three months behind in their rent.

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