Bobby had a wonderful couple of days in China, but got severe altitude sickness in Tibet, so badly he had to be hospitalized for more than a week. He was released delusional and hallucinating and fell from a window on Sept. 25th, 30 feet to the marble floor below. While it is a miracle he survived the fall, he has multiple serious fractures - his eye orbit, lower forearm, 4 ribs, femur, and 2 places in his pelvis. Basically, the right side of his body was crushed from the fall.
Bobby and Lori were air evacuated from Tibet to Bangkok (which is at sea level and has good medical facilities) to stabilize Bobby enough for the essential surgeries so he can be evacuated back to Pittsburgh, PA. Bobby has not yet regained consciousness (but an MRI showed that there is no reason he should not wake up) and Lori, who is - thank goodness - a nurse, has been with Bobby the whole time even though she knows no one in Bangkok and has used up all her PTO and is now on unpaid leave. She is staying in a hotel that is a 3-minute walk from the hospital and has been advocating for Bobby's care in Bangkok and with his insurance company so that he can get the needed surgeries to be returned to the U.S. (And yes, they did have travel insurance, but it has been eaten up due to the extent of this medical and logistical upheaval.)
They need help covering Lori's stay in Bangkok - she cannot leave Bobby there himself and she has run out of money. Bobby will obviously need help while he goes through rehabilitation from his injuries. The costs for that will likely exceed $10,000 but that seemed like an appropriate goal to just get Lori some relief and have a starting fund for Bobby.
UPDATE 10/17/18: Many of us learned today that Bobby is not expected to regain consciousness or be able to recover. It is heartbreaking news. Lori is with him, and will be to the end. I am sorry to share this hard news here. However, we wanted to be clear that with the situation as it is evolving, it looks like Bobby will not live to go through rehab or be able to return to the US alive. We do not want people to think that, at this time, donations will be able to support his recovery. We still hope that people will donate to help cover the massive expenses that Lori has incurred (and continues to incur) as she has been by his side through this whole traumatic experience and, after he does pass on, toward the cremation that Bobby intended and for a memorial service back in Pittsburgh. Again, I am so sorry if you are just learning this news now. I just wanted to update this main page that the nature of this GoFundMe campaign has changed.
UPDATE 10/19/18: Bobby is still alive. Still unconscious. The focus is now on getting him transported back to Pittsburgh directly into hospice without doing the surgeries in Bangkok. People are working on making the arrangements so this can happen.
UPDATE 10/30/18: Bobby will be coming home to end this lifetime in Pittsburgh. There may be an opportunity for people to visit at the hospital or hospice but we won’t know for sure until they arrive in Pittsburgh and he is evaluated by the physicians; late Friday 11/2 at the EARLIEST. Please envision a safe journey from Bangkok beginning Thursday morning in the US. We will be doing our best to update Facebook with more information but cannot offer reliable individual responses to either DMs or posts here. More info will be forthcoming as the support team has it. Again, please send calm and loving energy their way. And we know that all of Pittsburgh (and beyond) is hurting right now for multiple reasons.
Note: Someone will post to Bobby's Facebook page (and here) when there is more information. (Kelsey, I couldn't figure out how to reply to your comment.)
What is my relationship to Bobby and Lori? My beloved sister, Madeleine, who died from cancer in 2015, was Bobby's best friend. During Madeleine's illness, Bobby was there for her in so many ways. Lori also came to provide nursing support at particularly difficult times when there were gaps in her hospice care. These two were there for my sister during her final illness. I know she would want there to be a way for the extended community to support Bobby and Lori to get essential care in Bangkok and get back home.
I apologize for any gaps in my knowledge about what is going on; I'm just one of the many supporters who volunteered to try to help in this way.
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- David Stasenko
Organizer and beneficiary
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