Inspiring * Transformational * Courageous * Personable

When you’re 21, you have your entire life ahead of you

…at least that’s what Mercedes Ramirez Johnson thought on the morning of her twenty-first birthday. But by day’s end, her picture-perfect life was shattered – her parents and 158 other people were dead, and she was critically injured, stranded in the mountains of Colombia.

Mercedes knows from hard-earned experience the dangers of assuming there will always be a tomorrow. She is one of only four people who lived through what experts have called an “unsurvivable” airplane crash. After 18 harrowing hours stranded on a mountainside, doctors gave her only a 20 to 30 percent chance of survival.

“I’ve seen many speakers in my lifetime, but I’ve never been as moved as I was last night.”

During those hours, when she thought her life might be over, she prayed for a second chance at life and vowed that if given that gift, she would make it count. Today, Mercedes speaks to people and organizations worldwide, sharing her inspirational story and the concept that was first born on that mountain – the concept of Second Chance Living™. She has also used her personal tragedy as a catalyst to launch a crusade for safety awareness, becoming a highly sought-after speaker in the safety arena.

“It would be fair to say that Zig Ziglar and Tony Robbins have some competition.”
– Ernesto Padron, University of Florida