My son Stephen is a loyal, hardworking, and conscientious young man. He finds meaning in life through caring for others, especially Payton, who he has cherished, loved, and treated as his own adoptive daughter.
Two weeks ago, I received an awful call. Stephen was severely beaten and shot in the back while trying to terminate an unauthorized party at a vacation rental.
He was proud that he could help provide a place for visitors to make wonderful memories. He never thought that doing his work could lead to scars or disability that would also last a lifetime.
The beating broke ten ribs and fractured three vertebrae. The bullet chipped his spine. Because of the bullet’s proximity to his spine, his doctors cannot safely remove it. He will carry it for the rest of his life.
Stephen spent the next five days in a surgical intensive care unit at a level 1 trauma hospital, and then he was transferred to trauma care, then to an Acute Care inpatient Physical Rehab Hospital where he remains.
He cannot presently walk. His doctors believe that he can learn to walk again, but to do that he will need to spend at least 3-4 weeks in the acute care inpatient physical therapy hospital. After that, he is expected to need another 3-6 months of additional outpatient therapy.
It will be a long and difficult road ahead. Even at the end of that road, it is possible that does not regain all of his mobility.
He has been courageous and big-hearted in the face of all of this. Rather than talking about how worried he is about himself, he talks about how sorry he is to be causing any of us trouble. Of course, we know that he is scared and worried.
Stephen’s best chance to regain his mobility and the full use of his legs is to focus all of his time and attention on getting better. Conservatively, his lost income and medical bills over the next 6 months will sum well into the tens of thousands of dollars.
I’m humbly asking for your donations and your help raising money so that Stephen can simply focus on recovering and healing.
Please help him focus on his treatment, getting the best physical therapy available, and making the life changes that his current condition will require. With your help we know that he will walk again.
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