Quadriplegic needs help

This page is primarily managed by Tom's niece, Coral Richline, and his sister, Annie Johnson.  For any questions, please email at either:

[email redacted]

[email redacted]



In 1978,  Tom was a vibrant 15-year-old Texan with everything going for him. He was a handsome, charming kid that everyone loved. All he could think about was making the most of life and getting out on the football field where he was a star Defensive player.

The Accident :

Then one evening that year the unthinkable happened. He was hit head-on by an uninsured drunk driver.

That event caused a traumatic spinal cord injury leaving him a quadriplegic.

For many years he overcame despite all the cards stacked against him and even lived alone leading a semi-independent life for a few years. He attended Galveston Community College and participated in cutting edge research on spinal cord injuries.

As is frequently the case with quadriplegics, in 2009 other health problems started creeping in at greater frequency. Tom moved in with Memaw- my grandmother- because he needed round-the-clock care. He suffered from a stroke and has had repeated bouts with pneumonia necessitating a tracheotomy. Now he can’t speak for very long- making it easy to ignore him if you don’t care a lot. On top of this, he suffers from on-going pressure wounds which cause bone infections, and result in Tom spending weeks in the hospital... which causes more pressure wounds. 

Tom's doctor says he needs the Joerns Dolphincare Bed System. This bed is specially designed to heal and prevent future pressure wounds and will greatly improve Tom's quality of life.  Our entire family helps out with Tom and Memaw's monthly living expenses, but this is above and beyond what we can all manage any time soon. And Tom needs this bed ASAP for any future quality of life. So at this point our family, and Tom, is coming to you to ask for help.  We know this money can be raised and we know it will be the best thing for my Uncle!

Costs :

Special bed in order to reduce his pressure sores : $35,000

How you can help :

We would like to raise $35,000 to cover the Dolphincare Bed System that insurance doesn’t cover to heal the constant pressure sores, minimize any future ones, and improve his overall health. This will help Uncle Tom immensely.

We have cheerfully and willingly supported my Uncle and grandmother for years and are now asking for your help. Please help us help Uncle Tom.  

Thank you for considering joining us on this journey. We appreciate any and all donations. Please come to us if you have any questions.

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Ann Kaye 
Texas City, TX
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