Hunter's Heroes - Medical Expenses

On Friday, October 2, my nephew, Hunter Gatzman, had a tragic accident at a Baton Rouge trampoline arena called Area 51. He under-rotated on a flip and landed on the back of his neck causing instant paralysis. He was rushed to Our Lady of the Lake Hospital and arrived there at approximately 7:30pm. At 10:00pm he went into surgery for four hours to fuse C6 and C7 with screws and rods and one disc was removed.  Even though the spinal cord was crushed, the 4-hour surgery went well and he spent two full days in the Trauma Neuro Critical Care Unit at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital in Baton Rouge. His current diagnoses reads: Cervical vertebrae fracture with resultant semi-paralysis.

On Friday, October 9, he will be medically air-ambulanced/transported to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia where he will stay and will be undergoing acute rehabilitation for several months followed by outpatient and then home health with an extremely favorable outcome of walking again. No one can truly give us a date, but with his age, health and support of friends and family, we are confident that he will make a full recovery and will walk again.

Hunter has the most sensation in his arms/hands, but is currently suffering from extreme hyper-sensitivity in those limbs. He cannot feel his legs, but has some movement.  He lives with a smile on his face and even through the tears and lows, he’s wearing a smile (albeit a half one sometimes) determined to get back to life!

My family was struck by this tradgedy literally overnight and it will be a financial and an emotional strain for them.  Please consider donating and be a Hero to help alleviate my brother Mark Gatzman and his wife Rachael's out of pocket expenses for medical bills, travel expenses and other bills while they are missing work due to the unexpected move to Atlanta for Hunter's rehabilitation.

On behalf of Hunter's entire family, we want to extend our sincerest and most heartfelt thank you to our families and friends and their friends who have reached out with extraordinary support. It has truly been overwhelming. We also want to thank the doctors, nurses and staff at Our Lady Of the Lake Hospital for their expert care and compassion during an extremely difficult time.

Hunter will be in great hands at the Shepherd Center here in Atlanta!

Thank you for your support!

Donations (90)

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  • Marilyn Krone
    • $25 
    • 8 yrs
  • Neil McJunkins
    • $100 
    • 8 yrs
  • The Abudyak Family
    • $500 
    • 8 yrs
  • Dan Ciarlariello
    • $100 
    • 8 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • $25 
    • 8 yrs
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Kelley Gatzman Day
Atlanta, GA
Rachael Gatzman

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