This is our story: On July 19, 2018, our family was enjoying a summer vacation in Rhode Island. Davis, the youngest of three sons at age 21, was embarking this fall upon his senior year at Fordham University. After leaving Rhode Island for our home in Connecticut and ultimately his summer job in the Bronx, Davis was a passenger in a catastrophic car accident that resulted in a broken neck which changed all our lives forever. There are no words that can describe how the trauma and anguish of this accident is affecting Davis and our family and friends, and our future. Our first miracle was that Davis survived.
Thanks to the rapid response of Easton EMS, he was taken to St. Vincent’s, a local hospital. Due to the severity of his injuries, we immediately requested that he be airlifted to Yale University Hospital in New Haven, where he underwent emergency spinal surgery. Davis was in Surgical Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for three weeks, requiring the need for a ventilator, and ultimately a tracheotomy and feeding tube. Our second miracle was that Davis had no brain injury.
Davis is currently a long-term patient at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston, one of the few Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Model System Centers that provide the comprehensive specialty services his injuries demand. Davis is working hard with multiple therapists and following the most intensive physical rehabilitation needed to regain his mobility and his life. Like every SCI case, his prognosis is uncertain. He is awaiting a second neck surgery at Mass General Hospital and regardless of the outcome Davis will need intense rehabilitation and care every day for many years. Our hearts are broken, but we are rallying as a family and moving to Boston where we have found the best resources for Davis’ recovery. We need your help, support, and prayers to make our third miracle come true: with your help and the grace of God, Davis will walk again!
“Strength does not come from physical capacity, it comes from an indomitable will.” - Ghandi
We would like to thank our family, friends, and you for your support and generosity. We would also like to thank the countless people who have shared their SCI stories, experiences and hope with Davis. We send also our sincerest appreciation to the first responders, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Yale New Haven Health, MetLife (Davis’ dad’s employer), Journey Forward (part of the Christopher and Dana Reeve’s Foundation’ Neuro Recovery Network) where Davis plans to continue outpatient rehabilitation, and Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage for helping us find a wheelchair accessible apartment for our first year in Boston where we hope that Davis will join us there soon. Our list of gratitude will surely grow over these next few months and years.
A fund has been set up to raise $2 million to provide Davis the financial resources to recover and meet his goals. Every dollar raised will go directly to Davis and the Bigelow family to offset expenses (medical, rehabilitation, equipment, personal care, transportation, etc.) resulting from this tragic accident. It is estimated that the annual cost of recovery is $400,000 - $500,000 for the first few years.
An oversight committee has been assembled to be responsible for all funds raised during this campaign. A financial manager will be hired to manage the funds appropriately.
Bill and Denise Bigelow
Mercedes and Rick D’Angelo,CFA
Ali and Jay Skelton, Esq.
DonationsSee top donations
- Allison Shlemon
Fundraising team: Team Davis (3)
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