Shari would easily describe Chuck as a “night owl.” After a typically busy day doing volunteer work on his neighborhood landscape committee or focusing on HOA board member duties, playing a round of golf with friends or tending to family-oriented activities, he would often stay up late at night and into early morning watching sports programs, news or movies. Early in the morning on June 8, 2019, Chuck climbed the stairs from the basement and just as his foot made the top step, he slipped and fell backwards down the entire flight of stairs. Fortunately, Shari is a light sleeper and was quickly awakened when she heard Chuck calling her name. She expected to find him on the floor around the corner in the family room, but was surprised to find him sprawled out on the floor at the bottom of the stairs. Chuck couldn’t feel or move his arms and legs and Shari immediately called 911.
Within minutes, the Fishers Fire Department was at their home to deliver first aid, assess his condition and prepare Chuck for transport to St. Vincent’s hospital in Indianapolis – one of two trauma centers in the city. Once there, brain scans and MRIs showed that while there weren’t any broken bones, there had been enough trauma to his neck causing serious bruising around his spinal cord. Two days later, on June 10, he underwent hours of surgery during which a steel rod was placed in his neck, along his spine to stabilize the vertebrae. The unfortunate result of his accident has left Chuck paralyzed from the neck down.
He is considered a “partial quadriplegic.” While he has some, very limited movement in his arms, hands, legs and feet, the signals from his brain just aren’t making it through to his muscles to make them do what he wants. The long-term prognosis is unknown. His surgeon has indicated that his experience with other patients with similar injuries to Chuck’s would suggest the chances of recovery are anywhere from 0% to 95%. Chuck is currently in a motorized wheelchair and receiving 24x7 health care, including physical and occupational therapy in an attempt to regain as much mobility as possible. It’s going to be a long and expensive haul, but with proper and adequate therapies, we’re shooting for 100% recovery!
Chuck and Shari are both retired and receiving Medicare and supplemental health care benefits. However, Chuck’s full rehabilitation benefits run out after 100 days, on October 17, 2019. After this date, he will no longer be eligible to receive these expensive and critically needed benefits. His doctors are indicating he’ll need upwards of another 24 months of support and rehabilitation care with no guarantee he’ll regain his mobility. At a cost of roughly $9,000 out-of-pocket per month – NOT COVERED BY MEDICARE OR INSURANCE – in addition to the cost of remodeling their home to accommodate Chuck’s wheelchair and their need to purchase a wheelchair-accessible van for transportation, we have established a GoFundMe campaign goal to raise $300,000 to help Chuck and Shari offset these very large, critical and completely unanticipated expenses.
Our Turn to Give Back!
We are asking for your contributions now, to help achieve our goal of raising the money needed to ensure Chuck (and Shari) get the healthcare and rehabilitation support he needs to keep fighting every day to regain the mobility he has lost. Please dig down deep and give as generously as you can. Help us spread the word by sharing a link to this page and telling family, friends, business associates and others who may be willing to make their own contributions to help us reach our goal. It’s our turn to give back some of the love Chuck and Shari have shown to so many others over the years. It’s our turn to show them how much we care about them!
The extent of Chuck’s and Shari’s commitment to and engagement in their communities is nothing short of amazing! As you think about your ability to contribute, here’s a listing of the organizations that Chuck and Shari have devoted their time, talent (often in leadership roles) and/or financial resources to over the years:
American Veterans (AMVETS)
Crispus Attucks 20-year & 50-year Class Reunion Committees
Crispus Attucks Letterman Alumni Association
Day Nursery Association
FBI Citizens Academy Alumni Association
Fishers Arts Council
Fishers CrimeWatch Coordinator for The Bluff
Fishers Citizens Government Academy
Fishers Citizens Police Academy
Girl Scouts/Boy Scouts of America
Gray Eagle HOA – Landscape Committee
Gray Eagle HOA Board
Indiana National Bank (INB) Officers Association
Indiana Sheriffs Association
Indianapolis Children’s Bureau
Junior League of Indianapolis
Northwest Kiwanis Club
Stanley K. Lacy Leadership Program (Now Leadership Indianapolis)
The Bluffs at Gray Eagle HOA Board
Trinity Christian Methodist Episcopal Church