As of September 7, 2017, Denise had been in the ICU at Legacy Emanuel in Portland for 4 weeks. She was in a medically induced coma for the first 3 weeks. This last week her medical team started bringing her out of sedation, took out the trachea tube they had put in to assist her with breathing, and started encouraging her to eat solid foods. Denise has had three surgeries: the first to prepare her skin for a skin graft; and the second and third to transplant and graft skin to Denise's burn sights on her left and right legs and right arm.
Denise was released from ICU on 09/08/17, but her husband John reports Denise will likely remain in the hospital at Legacy Emanuel another 3 weeks. Denise is currently undergoing physical therapy about twice a day. Once she is released from the hospital, John reports that doctor's say she will likely need a nursing care facility for a bit to treat her dressings and continue her physical therapy.
Denise and her husband John Herlocker have been married for 37 years and have lived in Wamic Oregon for the last 6 years. The couple have raised four beautiful children together, consecutively: John, Paige, Tye and Dawson. The youngest being twins boys who just graduated from South Wasco County High School - one as valedictorian - and who are now going off to college this fall. John is a school board member and works for the Water District in Wamic. Reflecting on the hours, days and weeks after the accident, John says, "I can't thank everyone that was there enough to help my wife. I just want to thank everyone for the thoughts, prayers and kind words."
Denise has medical insurance, but the family has and will incur many expenses outside what medical insurance will cover, and they could use your help. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers and consider donating financially if you are able. Thank you.
- Jordan DiBartolo
- Deanne Lockridge
- Judy Stapleton
- Austin Davis
- Melisa Dennis-Leigh
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