Updated: Apr 17, 2019
NAVEED KHILJIE by PROfolio Photography.
We met Naveed in Calgary, who has worked with our last edition's cover star Kris Labelle for his commercial. When we heard about his story of almost dying to using all his skills as an artist and mechanic to help people, we had to feature him. Naveed shares his story of hope and making his own opportunity in his life, with the support of his family. Nav's story will inspire you!
Story by Naveed Khiljie
by Armand Flores
When I think back to being young and in school, I was a good academic student, but I made some poor decisions that changed the course of my life. I hung out with friends and didn’t go to school as much as I should (laughs). Sometimes I wish I could go back and change all the things I did wrong, but really these days I don’t take it as such a bad thing anymore. All those experiences made me the man I am today and I'm thriving.
So I dropped out in high school at 16 years old. My Father didn’t want me off track of course. He gave me two choices; either go back to school or work in the trade industry in the automotive sector, like my Grandfather and my Uncle. My Father encouragingly got me my first set of tools and a tool box. My parents have always been my greatest supporter and wanted the best for me. So that's where it began. I started working for a taxi company in the mechanic shop. I worked there for one year and made good money. As a 16 year old, I was making more than $2000 a month which was amazing but a lot of hard work at a young age in Calgary. I developed a deep interest in it. I always love challenges and this industry brings a lot of challenges and technicalities.
I have worked at many different mechanic specialty shops. I take every one of them as my education. I learn every single day without even thinking. We as humans don’t take life experiences as qualifications so I went back to school to complete my education out of necessity to move forward.
I sure have been through a lot in life. In April 25 2009 I almost died. I got jumped by some people not knowing why. I thank God that a couple of my friends were nearby and got me to the hospital in time otherwise I could have seriously died. I got hit more than 15 times in the back of the head, fractured my skull, dislocated both my shoulders, my hand broke in two places and I was in a coma. I woke up a few times a day after getting my hand relocated. I woke up in a lot of pain and passed out because when I reacted to the stitches tearing up. I lost a lot of blood; I passed out again a day later. I woke up to my Mom beside me holding my hand crying and praying for me. All I could think was how am I supposed to be their support and the first thing that came to my mind was can I move. It was a head injury. I tried to move every part of my body to make sure I wasn't paralyzed. I knew I had to get out of this. On the third night everyone was gone. I asked the nurse if I can walk and she said no but I wanted to walk so I asked her please help me try and I fell a lot of times but I got back up and kept trying.
The next morning when my family came to see me I walked over and hugged my Mom and Dad. I was very weak and went to the bathroom to clean off the blood all over my face. When I looked in the mirror I couldn't recognize myself. I cried a lot while cleaning my face and made a decision to change who I am and who I'm going to be. Six days later, I walked out of the hospital and doctors were shocked because they told me at least 2 to 3 months of recovery. I just let it go and dropped the case. I believe violence cannot be ended by violence. "Violence can only be ended by non-violence acts" Afterwards, I started working from home. The only thing I knew how to do was repair cars. I repaired at home with a cast on my arm to make money. Once I recovered, I returned to the shop and set a goal for myself. I know I have been throw off my goals so many times in over 14 years but not anymore. I had made myself a goal in 2009 and its 2019. I'm closer than ever. All thanks to God, my friends and my team is the reason why I am here. They believe in me and what I do. Today I am proud to say my name is Naveed Khiljie and I am an artist and mechanic and I own Mechanigo Inc., in Calgary, Alberta.
NAVEED KHILJIE by PROfolio Photography
"Successful people maintain a positive focus in life not matter what is going on around them. They stay focused on their past successes rather than their past failures, and on the next action steps they need to take them closer to the fulfillment of their goals rather than all the other distractions that life present to them." - Nav
By Regale Empire
Mobile and in Shop Mechanic