Dad took an ambulance ride to the hospital in Ortonville and Mom rode with the sheriff. Once at the hospital, even though he was breathing on his own, they bagged him to give his lungs a break. They had him hooked up to many machines and monitors while they tried to stabilize him. They contacted Fargo, and they got the helicopter ready to leave. Dad was loaded up and left Ortonville to make his way to Fargo.
He had a 45 minute flight while Mom and I had a two hour drive. Tracy, Shawn and Heather, Sydney Tanner were here waiting for Dad to arrive. They were sent to a waiting room while more and more amazing family showed up for Dad. This was the beginning of our hospital stay at Fargo Sanford's ICU. Dad went to cath right away to see if he had any blockages. There were none and his heart was fully intact. His Echo was in normal range. We were shocked!
Dad was cooled with therapeutic hypothermia for 24 hours to try to stop any damage that could have happened to brain and body. Dad was then warmed slowly to "reset" his body. He was fully sedated with propofol and fentanyl. He was also given anti-seizure medication that has sedation effects.
To check if he suffered a brain injury due to lack of oxygen, he had a CT scan. This came back with nothing wrong. He then did an EEG. This came back with no seizure activity but had "slow waves" but this could have been from all the drugs he was on. After that, he was taken to get an MRI. This also came back with nothing catastrophic. Dad was still under a lot of medication so he was not responding to any commands. Even once sedation came off, he still wasn't responding. We were told he may never wake up or if he did, he would be in a vegetative state. We refuse to believe this. The neurologist said we just need to give Dad more time.
Finally on day 7, Dad started moving around and responding a little, not much. Dad is still in the ICU on day 8. Today is the day that he woke up! He is nodding and blinking to respond to questions. He is also responding to commands and doing things they ask him to do.
Now that Dad is more awake than he has ever been, the worry of financial stress has overcome my mom. My dad will get one last pay check coming this week, with only one week of pay on it. Dad's hospital bills will continue to add up since this doesn't seem to be a short and quick hospital stay. When thinking about his transportation (ambulance and helicopter ride), numerous tests (blood tests and machines) and all the scans Dad has had, Mom can only imagine what the bill is going to be like. Dad will have insurance until the end of October. After that he will have none. Now my mom will have ONLY her income to live on and no insurance for my dad after October.
We are hoping and praying for Dad to make large improvements and to get out of the hospital, but as of now, it seems like this will be a day by day journey. I have set up this fund to help my parents with the extra stress of finances. Right now, my mom's attention needs to be with my dad, not with how she is going to pay bills.
If you can donate, we appreciate it so much. If you cannot, please send your prayers and positive vibes to my amazing Dad. He has made miraculous gains and we hope to see more and more.
Ali (youngest daughter)
DonationsSee top donations
- Paul Schmidt
- Christy Wilmore
- Joe & Teresa Schweitzer
- Kennedy Peterson
- Natalie Sundberg Sticka
Organizer and beneficiary
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more