Spinal Surgery Fund For Don Johnson

My name is Reiko Layman and my husband's name is Mark Layman, M.D.  He is an internal medicine physician in Seminole, Texas.  We are members of a public county golf course (Yoakum County Golf Course) located in Denver City, Texas.  On March 23, 2018, our assistant golf pro, Don Johnson,  injured his spine during the first local golf tournament of the season.

The golf club was understaffed and he was busting his ass to get golf carts for people entering the tournament.  In his rush to get the carts, he slipped on gravel and fell on his rear, literally busting his ass! 

Don is 35 years old and golf has been his passion for more than half of his life, first as a player and now as a teacher and club maker.  Don really enjoys helping people to enjoy the game of golf.  He is the kind of guy that would bend over backwards for you (if only he could!).   His other passion is his dog, a Husky named Jax.  He loves to play with him.  But, since his accident, he's hardly been able to work and his poor dog, Jax, misses playing with him. 

On April 2, he saw my husband in the clinic and he ordered an MRI and a surgical consult.  The MRI impression was:  Bilateral L5 pars interarticularis defect with grade II arterolisthesis of L5 on S1.  RECOMMEND NEUROSURGICAL FOLLOW-UP.  Advanced degerative disc disease and severe bilateral foraminal stenosis at L5-S1.  In Layman's terms MRI SHOWS L5-S1 SLIPPAGE OF 9MM AND COLLAPSED DISC.   See MRI Post under updates, published with Don Johnson's permission.

For several months he's been dealing with the endless cycle of bureaucracy known as Worker's Compensation.  Texas Mutual has yet to approve Don's surgery and Don has reached his limits.  He is in so much pain that he can only stand, sit or lie down for short periods of time.  He can't sleep because of the constant pain and inability to get comfortable.  Pain medication doesn't help.  He is losing the feeling in his left leg.  If he doesn't get the surgery soon, this could lead to permanent nerve damage. 

Last Sunday, Mark and I drove to the golf course to play our usual round of golf.  To our amazement, Don was working the front counter.  Mark asked him what was he doing at work?  Hasn't workmen's comp set you up for surgery yet?  Don told Mark, that workmen's comp said that he had to go back to work, and since he had run through all his savings, and they had quit paying him to be off work, he needed the money. They also wanted him to go to pain management and get a steroid shot in his back. Numerous studies have shown that these are no better than placebo injections for this type of injury. He didn't have the money to pay for the surgery himself.   At this point in the conversation, Don broke down.  He was trying not to cry but it was happening.  It's really, really hard for a woman to see a grown man cry.  His face was wracked with agony and frustration and he kept muttering I can't do this, I can't do this.  I think I'm done.  I can't take it any more.  We seriously thought he was considering taking his own life in order to stop the unrelenting pain.  What a horror story to be trapped in a body that is torturing you all day long.  Mark and I were so concerned for Don's physical and mental well-being, we felt we had to do something.  He needs to have the surgery.

That's when Mark said, "Go Fund Me!", and I said, "Your brilliant!".  

And this is the reason we are humbly asking for your help.  We are appealing to everyone out there who has had back pain, who plays the great game of golf, who loves their dog, who is compassionate, who wants to help.  Even $5 will help.  I told Don to hang on.  Just hang on.  People will rally for you, don't give up.

Thank you and Best regards,

Dr. Mark Layman and Reiko

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Organizer and beneficiary

Reiko Crawford Layman 
Seminole, TX
Don Johnson