After being shot, Andy fell on the ground and immediately noticed that he could not feel his legs. He had the presence of mind to call one of the friends he was meeting for dinner, sent them a drop pin of his exact location, and then called 911. His friends ran to find and help him despite the mayhem all around them and a dead body lying a few feet away. These friends kept Andy calm and safe as the police and ambulances started to arrive.
He was taken to SF General Hospital and needed a life-saving operation. The bullet tore his diaphragm, destroyed his spleen and caused significant damage to his spine.
Upon waking from the anesthesia, Andy’s first words to friends were: “hassle...hassle mabaril bro” (“it’s such a hassle to be shot bro” in Tagalog). This traumatic event did not take away his courage, dampen his hope, or diminish his strength. Instead of being angry or bitter, Andy has stayed positive and is 100% focused on recovery. He is stable but doctors are not optimistic that he will ever recover use of his legs. His first step towards recovery is moving to a physical rehabilitation center in northern California.
While he still does not have any feeling from the waist down, Andy has remained extraordinarily positive. A doctor told him that there was a 90% chance that he was paralyzed -- Andy’s response? “10% is more than I need.” We are (cautiously) hopeful that Andy will be able to walk again and want to help raise the funds needed to get him there.
Neurosurgeons have commented that given Andy’s young age, health, positive attitude, and strong support system, he can make meaningful progress and potentially regain mobility during physical rehabilitation. This may take months, or even years, but Andy is completely determined to get back on his feet.
More details on Andy’s time at the hospital to-date
After his first surgery the night of the shooting, Andy had a second successful operation on Wednesday, March 27. Doctors put screws and rods in his spine to help with reinforcement and stability. He has recovered extraordinarily quickly from these two procedures and was released from the ICU on April 1.
Doctors have decided that it is safer to leave the bullet lodged in his chest wall (close to the lungs). As a result, they are unable to take an MRI or give a more accurate assessment of spinal damage.
Instead of additional surgeries, doctors have recommended that Andy undergo rigorous physical rehabilitation at a leading facility that specializes in traumatic brain and spine injuries in young adults. Physical rehabilitation is the best next step to help Andy recover, become self-sufficient, and hopefully regain mobility.
Where your money will go
Our goal is to raise $100,000 to help Andy with the following:
-- Physical rehabilitation costs that are not covered by insurance. His first round of rigorous physical therapy is estimated at $11k/day for 3 weeks. This will mostly be covered by insurance, but then Andy is expected to spend at least 3-4 sessions per week at another facility (each session estimated at $250/day, for at least 6 months)
-- Home care costs (estimated at $100/day, for at least 6 months)
-- Special needs due to his new disabilities (e.g., wheelchair, accessibility adjustments to his home)
-- Living expenses / loss of income
-- Any other out-of-pocket expenses that he may incur during rehab
More background on Andy
Andy is a beloved son, brother, friend, and colleague -- the 20+ visitors per day in the ICU are a testament to that. Given everything that’s happened to him, it would have been completely understandable for Andy to be bitter or angry -- instead, he has spent his days in the ICU becoming friends with staff, entertaining visitors, and looking forward to regaining his strength and mobility.
Thank you for reading Andy’s story. We appreciate any help or contribution, no matter how big or small! Please share our campaign link on social media and with your friends. We will keep you posted on the use of funds and his progress going forward. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us directly.
DonationsSee top donations
- Barbara Bruns
- sharm hiranand
- Ana Olive
Fundraising team: Team Andy (4)
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