On November 23rd, 2019, an unspeakable tragedy occurred. I received a heart wrenching phone call from my brother-in-law, Arthur, who frantically told me that my sister, Denise, was hit in the head by a stray bullet. The police and the ambulance were on sight and they were already on the way to the local hospital emergency room in St. Joseph, MI and she was in critical condition. My sister had been in bed watching TV when they heard gunfire outside their home. Within seconds my sister cried out that she had been hit and blood was everywhere. The bullet came through their bedroom window and hit her face.
The local hospital medevacked her to another hospital which was under two hours away but was better equipped to deal with her critical and traumatic injury. Their family car was not drivable, so our grand nephew drove Arthur to the Grand Rapids hospital that was now treating my sister. They stabilized her and over 10 days we waited moment by moment for updates on her condition and what the surgeons were going to do.
After scans and consultations, the surgeons concluded that the bullet cannot be removed, my sister may lose her right eye, and after all the swelling has gone down, she will need reconstructive surgery to repair all the bone that was shattered. My sister had already had a mini stroke earlier this year right before my mother passed from a heart attack. The stroke left her unable to use her legs without assistance and she was not able to attend our mother’s memorial. Now this senseless tragedy.
To prevent blood clots and another stroke, a stent will be placed in her eye area to drain the blood and help the massive swelling go down. She will be on six months of blood thinners and will have to have numerous follow-ups to see if her right eye will be removed and when the scheduling of the reconstructive surgery will be done.
We are kindly asking for donations to help cover medical expenses and transportation costs and to help support my sister who’s living through this nightmare.
Thank you from our hearts and God bless.
A link to the shooting is provided here: https://abc57.com/news/benton-harbor-woman-shot-in-the-head-by-stray-bullet-while-lying-in-bed