Luke Taylor - Help Fund

$63,825 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 460 people in 25 months
Many of you know our brother Luke Taylor - the hilarious, animated, big-hearted, creative lunatic who brings light and comedy to everyone with whom he has contact. All who know him well will also understand his long time passion for cycling, and his love of and talent for the sport of road cycling.

On Saturday 27th May, our brother Luke woke up, put on his cycling gear and headed out on his beloved road bike for a training ride. He was training to get fit in preparation to row surfboats again this season with some mates at Fairhaven SLSC.

As tragically so often seems to happen these days, this is another story of driver vs cyclist.  As Luke was enjoying his ride, a driver allegedly failed to give way and Luke and his bike were brutally impacted by a 4WD vehicle.

Luke was airlifted to The Alfred Hospital Trauma Centre with life-threatening injuries.  Upon arrival Luke had lost a lot of blood and had to be resuscitated by the amazing medical team who undoubtedly saved his life. He was immediately taken to theatre where he underwent fourteen hours of surgery. Luke's pelvis was fractured and split open by the impact. He has numerous and complicated fractures to his femurs in both legs and fractures to his tibia and fibula in his right leg. He has a number of major wounds to his upper and lower legs. His left elbow and humerus are badly fractured. His kidney is bruised and his bladder was split. A CT scan appears to have ruled out any significant brain trauma at this stage. He has a broken rib & vertebra, his chest and lungs appear to be doing OK.

Luke got to ICU around 4 am Saturday after 14 hours in theatre. His condition is still critical. He's now sedated and intubated in an induced coma. When the sedative medication is backed off, there are indications that he can hear us, and he is making attempts to communicate with us by squeezing our hand or nodding. We, his family are all by his side, and will remain so.

Luke has been working full time as a Building Designer with an architectural firm in Lorne - a dream job for him, in a career he has worked hard to build up. Recently Luke has been balancing his career with being a loving single dad to his beautiful little 8-year-old boy Alfie.  Luke has been Alfie's sole carer while Naomi - Luke's ex-wife and Alfie's Mum - has been recovering from her own ongoing battle with breast cancer. Alfie has been enjoying his new school in Ballarat this year.  We are grateful that Naomi was in a position to suddenly take  Alfie back into her full care, and Alfie has now started school again back in Torquay.

It's going to be a long time before Luke can work again, let alone walk. We've set up this fundraising page because we know his friends, family and supporters are going to want to help Luke and his family in this dire time of need. 

Any donations you wish to generously give will be used to assist Alfie and Naomi, and to cover Luke's ongoing day to day life expenses while he is fighting for his life. 

Luke is in no position to take visitors apart from his immediate family.  As Luke hopefully slowly progresses to a point where he can start to rehabilitate and start to see his wider family and friends, we will communicate this to you all. His recovery will be a very long process and he will need the support of each and every one of you over a very long haul.

Apart from your thoughts and prayers, at this point in time, this fundraising effort is the best way you can help Luke. Anything you can give will help to alleviate some of the peripheral pressure that has inevitably resulted from this tragic accident.


Update Mon night 29th May;
We are overwhelmed by all of the support, kind words and generous donations from so many people. Luke is fighting hard. He remains sedated and intubated in ICU with an amazing team of staff looking after him. We cannot speak highly enough of the incredible people who have been involved in Luke's care. Luke went back to theatre this afternoon to have his wounds cleaned and attended to. Tomorrow he will have a lengthy surgery to stabilise the fractures in his arm and legs. He will also have some filters positioned in his abdominal veins to reduce the chance of blood clots from his legs moving up to his lungs. His condition remains critical but stable.

Update Wed 31 May;
Luke remains intubated and sedated in a critical but stable condition. On Tuesday morning, Luke had the IVC filter inserted to hopefully catch any clots before they get to his lungs. He also had a CT scan of his left arm/elbow. Theatre did not eventuate on Tuesday afternoon. Luke has many complex needs at the moment and keeping him alive remains the number one priority. We are quickly learning that the Alfred Trauma Centre and ICU is a mind blowing place that involves hundreds of amazing individuals working in specialist teams who all coordinate together to manage each patient. Luke has dozens of these incredible people visiting him each day, making complex decisions about how to best get him through the next couple of hours and days. We are in awe of the work they do and anyone reading this should take a moment to appreciate how lucky we all are in this country to have access to their knowledge, skills and hard work. Any of us could be in there ourselves at any time as a result of a split-second, life-changing moment. Today's plan is for Luke to go to theatre this afternoon for at least 6 hours of surgery to his many fractures and some other injuries. This will be followed by another operation on his pelvis and other injuries on Thursday. He'll need lots of strength over the next 36 hours. We are once again overwhelmed by the support and generosity of so many people. Luke had a moment yesterday that was very heart warming; upon telling him that his cycling mates from Ballarat, who refer to him as Pablo, had left messages of support, he was able to slightly open his eyes and gently nod and squeeze our hand. A similar moment occurred this morning when we put some earphones in his ears to listen to some voice messages friends have sent through. He knows people are supporting him and he is fighting hard!
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It is impossible to express the gratitude we all feel towards the Ambulance Victoria EMT (Paramedic) team who worked on Luke in that first critical hour after his accident on May 27. There is no doubt that the work they did, and the decisions they made, saved his life. Last week Luke had a very emotional reunion with the Ambulance Victoria EMT team who were there with him roadside after his accident. To read the article http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/5021343/a-ballarat-cyclist-has-thanked-emts-who-saved-his-life-in-may/
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A great update, straight from the horse's mouth this time. Luke was interviewed by Deb Rybeiki on ABC radio this week. A touching interview and a great insight into how he's progressing in rehab, now just over 4mths post accident.

https://soundcloud.com/wayne-baker-18/luke-taylor-debbie-rybicki-abcmp3 on #SoundCloud
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Today, the 27 July, it has been 8 weeks and 5 days, since 27 May – the day of Luke’s accident; the day when one simple moment in time irrevocably changed all of our lives in a succession of unimaginable ways. It remains beautifully overwhelming and is so touching for all of us, particularly for Luke, to witness the ever-growing community of supporters who continue to rally for Luke and his family – who are there for him constantly at every step of this drawn-out journey. Thank you to each and every one of you, who have all seen no limits in what you’ve been prepared to do to ensure Luke has all the love and support in the world as he fights the battle of his life. You are all amazing.

The Epworth Rehab Hospital in Hawthorn is now well and truly Luke’s home. The well-used large glass lolly jar on Luke’s visitor’s coffee table is constantly being refilled, as a non-stop procession of visitors make the pilgrimage to Hawthorn to egg Luke on in his recovery, whilst gorging on simple sugars. The lolly jar was not planned to be a Pavlov’s Dog-esque tactic, but perhaps it functions in such a way. In any case, keep the procession of visitors coming – Luke loves it.

Luke, and all of us in his family are extremely grateful to the wonderful staff at the Epworth Hawthorn for their professional caring and concern. Their positive approach and the generous sharing of their time and skills in so many ways is very much appreciated. It truly is a beautiful rehab facility and we are all so grateful Luke is in such a warm and caring place, as it will be home for him for quite some time to come yet. No one, including Luke’s specialist medical teams and physios, has given any indication of how long Luke might be required to be there. This is a game that is still being played on a day to day basis.

It’s impossible for the rest of us to possibly comprehend the horror of what Luke has been through over the past 8 weeks. The reality is that one day he was out blissfully training on his road-bike, yet now he lays flat on his back in bed for most of every day, in a haze of opioids - a response to his world which is still full of various levels of pain. His right leg has constant nerve pain and we all have concerns about him not yet being able to control/use it. Luke’s pain extends into his lower back and groin. Scans show that he still has blood clots in his legs - necessitating anticoagulant to be administered via injection twice daily, and subsequently, the IVC filter remains in place.

Luke's badly fractured right elbow/humorous is causing some doubts about potential for a full recovery, and complications with his right shoulder have also now arisen - his right arm is still immobilized but is now in a new brace which is locked in position, and more comfortable than the former plaster back slab. And his severely fractured pelvis? That hasn't yet been tested with weight bearing capacity, and won’t be ready to do so for some time yet. Luke’s orthopaedic team are indicating there is further surgery by way of bone grafts to come, at least in his left leg where he had a grievously shattered femur. Luke is far from out of the woods. Eight weeks in and the journey is just beginning.

As time has passed people generally think and assume that Luke is doing really well, and superficially it does generally appear that way. Luke has recently obtained a disc containing a collection of most of his post-operative Xrays / CTs & MRI scans from The Alfred Hospital. Viewing this vast collection of images is like a journey through a macabre Frankenstein-esque sci-fi photographic collection. The brutality of the essential orthopaedic interventions that have saved Luke’s life cannot be grasped until you have viewed the Xrays portraying his now mostly-metal internals. The sheer size and length of the nails that have been hammered down the centre - the full length - of what was left of his two femurs & also down his left tibia are alarming. Equally shocking are the massive bolts which have been screwed into place to hold his open-book pelvic fracture in position. Not to mention the collection of other screws, bolts, wires and plates that are holding his skeletal mass in place as we all hope that new bone can be laid down and grow strong enough to once again hold the significant weight that is Luke Taylor! Luke’s array of severe and complex fractures need many months to heal and this process can't be hurried. As mentioned earlier he is still unable to weight bear and that will be the case for an undetermined amount of time going forward.

Luke's extensive gluteal wound is healing well and the suture line is finally intact. The drain tube from that wound was finally removed last week and the exit site is healing well. After a few bouts of infection in this wound, it is a relief that it appears to be finally healing. It appears we are almost at the point where Luke will soon be able to begin some hydrotherapy – this can occur once all suture lines are healed completely. This will be a wonderful addition to the physiotherapy regime which is keeping Luke busy twice daily.

Luke also continues to visit out-patient clinics at The Alfred Hospital, almost weekly for consultation with the specialist teams who have worked with him from his arrival at The Alfred Trauma Centre by helicopter back on 27 May. The hospital transfers, transport and waiting associated with these visits are cause for some pain and frustration, although through some negotiation the process is being streamlined a little.

The most exciting news! Luke was supplied with a state of the art electric wheel chair last Monday, which has given him a sense of freedom and independence. During all of his physio sessions, he has learned how to transfer himself to the wheel chair, sliding from bed to chair with minimal help from staff or family. This was a very big step forward! Luke is now able to take himself down the hospital lift to the front of the hospital, phone the cafe opposite, and have his coffee brought over the road to him before his physio session most mornings, even shouting the nurses & physio’s coffee occasionally!!! Never one to set his sights on easy goals, within less than a week of having his new wheelchair, Luke had already focused on mastering its use completely so he could test both the wheelchair and his own limits and attend the MCG on Saturday with Matt to see his beloved Tigers smash out another win! There’s no stopping Luke now.. you might even catch a glimpse of him rolling around Hawthorn - chatting to the well-coiffured Pru & Tru’s on Glenferrie Rd. It’s unlikely you’d miss the large frame that is him, cruising around on his new electric wheels playing cool like a hipster on a matt black vintage fixie.

Although Luke is improving, it’s a very long and slow road ahead, which requires a lot of patience from Luke and all of us as well. Our thanks again go to the amazing staff working with Luke - who are always finding new little ways to help make Luke's life flow a bit more smoothly. Thanks also to the doctors who are still working hard to give Luke the best outcome possible. And thanks to everyone for the support, thoughts, messages, and prayers which have been a massive encouragement for Luke.

We believe Luke's progress so far has been almost miraculous, and with all of your ongoing support and encouragement, it will continue. Keep fighting Lukey!
Sign now reads: #GRAND FUBAR's PALACE..
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A Milestone Moment!

In an earlier update while Luke was stillin ICU, we noted that Luke had managed to overcome the insurmountable on an hour by hour, day by day basis. There have been a number of truly major milestones:

1) surviving the initial moment of impact & subsequent time roadside / being airlifted toThe Alfred Trauma Centre.
2) enduring countless hours (ie days and days worth) of life-saving major surgeries during that first week in ICU
3) miraculously being cleared of any major organ/head/brain/neck/spinal injury
4) coming out of an induced coma & being extubated after only one week
5) fighting off a life-threatening sinus infection in ICU & avoiding being reintubated
6) being moved out of ICU and on to the Trauma Ward at The Alfred only 9 days after the accident
7) remaining positive and maintaining a strong sense of humour throughout it all...

... and now for today's major milestone....


This is a huge and significant achievement for everyone involved in Luke's care. It is an enormous testament not only to the quality of medical care and attention he has had - from the moment he was attended to roadside to the weeks he has spent at The Alfred Hospital - but also a massive credit to Luke's attitude, focus, determination and constant desire to keep on improving and healing at an unprecedented rate! Surpassing everyone's expectations of him not only just surviving but leaping from stage to stage in his recovery.

And so begins the next marathon leg of this journey.

Luke was overjoyed to be relocated to the Epworth Hawthorn Rehab Hospital this afternoon. Although the Epworth Hawthorn is definitely a five-star facility when it comes to rehab hospitals, Luke knows he is there to 'work', and it's going to be very long, tough road to recovery.

Potentially the Epworth Hawthorn will be Luke's home for many months to come. With Luke's complex pelvic fractures alone he is unable to weight-bear for a minimum of three months. We are all hoping that his many other wounds and the multiple fractures to his femurs in both legs & his left tib/fib, to his shattered right humerus and fractures to his vertebra and ribs will also heal within this time, without requiring too much more orthopedic intervention. While Luke is rendered immobile and healing, his muscle will be slowly atrophying.

During his stay at the Epworth, Luke, along with the other thirty or so trauma rehab patients, will attend one rehab session each morning and another session in the afternoon. During these rehab sessions Luke will be pushed, stretched, poked, mobilised, strengthened, supported, encouraged, cajoled and coaxed as he works towards slowly building the strength, mobility and courage required in order for him to walk again. Once he is up and moving again, Luke will then have to work hard to regain the muscle tone, range and function lost as a result of this horrific accident.

If surviving ICU was the sprint, then rehab is where the true endurance event now begins. Luke is going to need all of you - his amazing support network - to gather around him in the months to come. Now more than ever before. This is where it's likely to get frustrating, tedious and at times might all feel just so damn unfair.

The twice-daily physio/rehab sessions will be mentally and physically gruelling, so rest and recovery will be especially important, especially as Luke is adjusting to this new routine. One of the best things about the Epworth is that after three and a half weeks at the very action-packed & noisy Alfred Hospital, he now has a chance to get some good quality sleep and rest, in a private room, with little disturbances.

Visiting hours at The Epworth Hawthorn are strictly limited to 4:00pm-8:00pm weeknights and 12noon - 8:00pm on Saturdays & Sundays. Luke's days will be very structured until 4:00pm so there are no visitors admitted to the hospital until then.

So Luke doesn't receive all his visitors at once, perhaps use facebook messenger to contact Luke to check in to see what day/time visit suits best, he is happy to "book you in"!

Bear in mind when you visit, that Luke is still taking extremely high doses of pain medication and he does get drowsy and tired, so if you see him disengaging or drifting off while you are visiting, head out for a coffee in Hawthorn for a while and let him rest, he needs a lot of sleep/rest to heal. He loves visits, but also really needs his rest.

As always, please use the hospital hand sanitizer and please don't visit if you feel unwell or have been around sickness. A cold/gastro/infection could do real harm to Luke in his current condition.

The Epworth Hawthorn is located at 50 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn. It is located right next to Hawthorn train station. Parking is easy: there's either paid parking at the hospital or free parking for 4 hours on streets just across the road near the parklands.

If you want to bring something for Luke here are some ideas:
- photos of friends/good times (we will put a cork board in his room so you can pin photos on it, so he feels supported by great mates when things get tough).
- the room has a small bar fridge, and Luke loves sparkling mineral water, so if you are coming by, grab a bottle or two to leave in the fridge!

Luke's room at Epworth Hawthorn is lovely, private and spacious and great for visitors to relax in and have some quality visits with Luke! So enjoy! Have a great time! There is so much to celebrate as Luke conquers this massive milestone & sets his sights on the big task ahead.

Luke's journey has given all of us a new appreciation of our own lives and how precious they are. Until you've watched someone endure hell while fighting with every cell in their being just to simply stay alive, you can't appreciate what it means to want to live. This journey has hammered home the true value of family and friends, and the beauty of these relationships when at your rawest and lowest points. Luke's own composure and attitude throughout this journey has permanently altered any previous ideas held on the concepts of toughness, courage, bravery or determination. Everything else seems so pathetically insignificant now.

Thank you all so much for your overwhelming support, love and care for Luke. He is an absolutely incredible person [superhuman], and we are all just so happy to still have him here with us in our lives. There is no doubt in our minds that all of your thoughts, prayers, messages, actions and gestures have made ALL the difference in getting Luke to this momentous point in his journey.

Keep fighting Lukey. Your series of 'shit options' just got slightly better...
Luke Taylor.. What a trooper!...
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$63,825 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 460 people in 25 months
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