About this fundraiser

I have been asked by several folks to set up this site. This is not something I ever imagined doing for someone in my family and by no means do I expect everyone to donate.  Cole has a very long road ahead of him and will be out of work and getting treatment for a very long time.

Cole had a very violent crash at ACP during a race yesterday. He was unconscious and unresponsive for a very long time. They rushed him into emergency surgery immediately and opened up his abdomen to look for internal bleeding. He is currently on a ventilator and remains sedated. So far we know he has the following:

He has a brain bleed in the frontal lobe.(he will require in-patient physical therapy to relearn how to walk, eat…everything.

They have him on high dose antibiotics as they are concerned with infection that could get into the brain.

Every bone in his face is broken. His jawbone is broken off in a very high inaccessible spot for them to fix. They will be wiring his jaw shut for several weeks. They may need to put several plates in his face to be able to hold the jaw while wired shut.

He has multiple lacerations on his face and the plastic surgeon will do his best to fix that. 

We don't have any information about his neck yet as they couldn't scan yet with the collar on.

He a bruised lung and pulmonary edema, so they monitor his breathing and suction blood out of his lungs as needed.

He has a fractured left femur and they will be taking him to surgery this afternoon to put a rod in as it was a severe break and concern for blood clot.

He will be in ICU for 3-4 weeks at Abrazo West.

03/26/24 UPDATE: Cole had surgery yesterday to put a rod in his left femur which was successful. He remained sedated and on the ventilator. Last night at 12:30am, he was thrashing around so much that he got his ventilator out!  They changed his meds. He is in and out of consciousness. I was able to speak with him for a short bit. He is very confused and thought he was in Colorado and doesn't remember racing. He then immediately didn't remember what I said. He tried to open his eyes but they were rolling around in there. He is going in for surgery in about an hour for his face. They will be wiring his jaw shut,  not sure what else , as I am meeting with the surgeon shortly. He is a fighter!

.

I just met with the the surgeon. His lower face is basically detached as it is broken all the way across above his upper teeth. They will put a plate in on each side so they can wire the jaw shut and attach it to the plates.

.

Welp. They just wheeled him back because the equipment didn't meet the sterility requirements. They will try again tomorrow.

UPDATE 03/27/24- Today was an unproductive day. Cole was sedated heavily for most of the day. I asked to have an MRI of his neck because he complained of pain. It was ordered STAT. Apparently that means 12 hours here. They wheeled him in for surgery at 1:30 pm on his face today and the plastic surgeon calls me to say it has been cancelled because the Trauma team ordered an MRI and he can't move forward until Cole is cleared, as he would be wrenching on his neck trying to work on his face…. he at least repaired the side of his lip.   We furthered discussed the MRI and then I remember Cole actually had a metal retainer behind his teeth. Unknown how that affects anything, we went thru asking body piercing etc, and then the nurse said, wait, he has staples down the middle of his stomach!  They are steel. How does that affect the MRI.. so here we wait.  We will know more tomorrow. Thank you to everyone for the well wishes, kind words, support and outpouring of love everyone has shown. We are so humbled.

 

UPDATE 03/28/24 - Today was a great day.  I call it divine intervention!   Two days in a row  he was rolled into surgery and minutes from having plates put in his face and his jaw wired shut and there was an issue each time and he was rolled back to his room.  Today, his face is looking so good, his jaw is lining up and surgery is cancelled! No plates, no wires. He still has a face full of fractures. As the plastic surgeon said, he is like an eggshell and the pieces are all there, but there are breaks everywhere. Instead, he will need to go to an oral surgeon about his broken jaw as soon as possible.  The break is up by his ear, so it is very high and the plastic surgeon could not get to that.  He is still on anti-seizure medication for 2 days.  It totally knocks him out,. They did an MRI of his neck and there are no herniations. That is amazing with the impact he took!  It's nice to be young and work out and have super strong muscles! Saved his neck.  I am hoping that next week sometime, he can move into in-patient rehab closer to home.   Today Terry Webb, TBT Racing, came for a visit. Cole managed to stay pretty much awake for an hour which is huge. We have only had 5-10 minute intervals until now. He was still confused at times and said some silly things.  He thinks he is racing at San Manuel tomorrow.  We will see where he thinks he is tomorrow.  He recently started coughing, and it sounds like it is coming from crap in his lungs.  I will monitor that.

Of course as soon as I posted this, he was having some coughing issues and coughed up a bit of blood and then was having wheezing issues. I requested they get respiratory therapy here for a breathing treatment. I am glad I was here so I saw what was happening. That stuff gets your heart rate going. He was awake and getting mad. He wants to go home and wants his phone!   He is going to be fighting the entire time to do everything he can to get out of here as  whenever he is awake.  I told the night nurse to watch him.  I hope I can get him transferred to acute inpatient  therapy care sooner than expected. 

UPDATE 03/29/24 - Today was a great day!!  Cole was up almost day. Although he is not completely oriented to time and place, so we never know what state we are in,  or race we happen to be at or going to, it is amusing to talk to him. His personality is a little different but the things he says makes us laugh, other than the 60+ times he has said he just wants to go home and wants his phone and he just wants to eat real food (which he can't for 6 weeks due to broken jaw).  They are working on transferring him closer to home for inpatient acute intensive rehab. He will do therapy for his leg and cognitive function.  Hopefully next week some time, he cant get out of here.  I am currently working on getting him a Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon regarding getting his jaw back into place. The smoothies are getting old and it has only been a day. Thank you for all the prayers. They are working!!!

UPDATE 03/30/24- Getting better every day.  All I have  heard all day is that he wants to go home and wants his phone. He couldn't believe nobody told him all the bones in his face were broken and he didn't know he had stitches.  LOL!  He gets told the injuries every day. We are waiting for them to get all the paperwork together for the transfer to the inpatient rehab.  **Special Mention - Cole's friend Evan was one of his visitors yesterday and said his entire church prayed for Cole, over 400 people. I was so touched, it brought tears to my eyes. The power of prayer is working.

UPDATE 03/31 /24 - Things always change after I post but I hope today will be steadier and calm. He continues to cough of blood.  His lung is partially collapsed. He was very agitated last night after everyone left and anxiety kicked in full gear. He was hyper-focused on getting out of here to go home. He just wanted to go home for a few hours and feel the dirt at home and take a shower. He needed to feel grounded. I heard that at least 100+ times sitting there. Last night he called me 30 times telling me to come get him, I wasn't listening to him and needed to come back right away.  I have to think the nurses were done listening to him as well. Repeat starting at 5:30 this am. His friend Dom was here for a few hours this morning and got to deal with it and head him off a few times. I did the next best thing, I brought him a jar of dirt from Rio Verde and ajar of rain water!  On my way to the hospital he called after Dom left and he was very calm. I thought they sedated him.  It turned out the his nurse, Alexander, was a super chill guy who practices western medicine with herbs, does yoga, meditates. Cole felt that.  I gave him the jars when I got to the hospital and he immediately stuck his hands in both.  Nurse Alexander absolutely loved that. I am so glad he is working until 7:30pm tonight. He will bring calmness to Cole.

04/01/24 - Today was a challenge trying to move his care along. It is frustrating to say the least. Inpatient Rehab Hospitals make a lot of money of their patients so they lie to you to get you in the door.  I really need a place that will bring him to the oral surgeon as soon as I can get him in. The place I thought I was getting him in kind of said they would provide transport. Over the weekend I began to think she was lying to me. I wanted an absolute that they would take him. Today I get a no. They want him to wait until he is discharged. In other words, let his jaw heal and the wrong place and let the surgeon break it at a later date to put it back in the right place! I told her he is not going there.  This is a set back for the date. I called another facility. The lady said we provide transport, let me transfer you to the nurses station. I figured I better press them as well. In the end I got, the CEO would have to approve it. I am beside myself. I also called a bunch of oral surgeons nearby to see who could see him right away. All were booked out or not taking new patients. I called one on referral from the trauma surgeon who said his friend was an oral surgeon. This doctor was ready to see him in the office tomorrow morning…but….If I take him out of the hospital, I will be unable to get him into inpatient therapy anymore. This doctor is willing to look at the films tomorrow morning so he can at least see what is going on and let me know our next steps. This was all a big blow today.  I have been trying all day to get the films burned to a CD so Glenn can bring them to that doctor at 8am tomorrow. The nurse is all over it trying to get it done.  I sit here at 5:30pm tonight hoping nobody drops the ball and I can leave here tonight with it.  I finally got the CD at 9pm so I could go home and be ready to bring it to the oral surgeon in the morning.

04/02/24 - The fun started early today.  At 5:30am, the nurse called me to say that radiology just brought 2 more CD's. Like what the heck?! Why did I sit here for hours yesterday only to have to come back for some surprise CD's? They are an hour away. Luckily Cole had a friend stay with him last night and they were able to  drive towards me and save about 45 minutes, as I had to get the CD's and turn back around to go to the oral surgeon on Tatum. By the time I was done, it was 3 hours of driving before I made it back to the hospital. Then I spent the morning making phone calls to make sure the inpatient transfer was moving forward, which of course it wasn't and there were issues.  Lots of calls today. I hope I can get him out of here tomorrow if wheels keep turning.  What is most amazing is the way this kid heals. The two purple eyes are almost gone which is huge.  If you look at him you wouldn't know every bone in his face is broken, and the mandible broken and displaced. still hoping there is nothing damaged in his throat area possibly from pulling the ventilator out, because he is still spitting out blood here and there, and has noise breathing.  They said to watch that for 2 weeks because it is not a good procedure to go in and see what is going on. We have 4 things to focus on right now: Getting Cole out of the trauma ward, getting Cole walking again, getting rid of the brain fog and fixing his jaw. 

04/03/24 - The day started with phone calls to his hospital case manager and the rehabilitation hospital to make sure the wheels were turning and we would get him moved.  Finally at 5pm, the medical transport showed up to take him away!  We are onto chapter three. Intense daily rehab so he can come home. They allow your dog to come visit, so I can't wait to bring Riley.  He really misses her. She was his daily alarm when I would tell her to go get Cole. She would run at full speed thru the house and take a flying leap, about 8 feet, and land on him and begin ripping his covers off. I don't think he would appreciate the pokie feet hitting him in his new stomach zipper now. So we will need calm that down.  She is a Border Collie, and that was her “job” every morning. Tomorrow is meeting with the team at the rehab hospital for his plan of care. I am at a loss on the oral surgeon as I thought he was going to look at the films when I dropped them off on Tuesday. I called today and he hadn't looked at them yet.  This is frustrating as the bones are 1 1 days out now and healing in the wrong spot. I will be following up this in the morning as well.

04/04/24 - I brought Riley to visit Cole today. She was happy to see him.  I thought we were finally on the right path…but… always a hiccup! The oral surgeon looked at the CT scans from the hospital and wanted to see Cole asap. He said there is a 14 day window for surgery which would be this Sunday… and tomorrow is Friday. Oral surgeon will see him tomorrow and wants to wire the jaw shut…. but…. if he has to be taken to a hospital for surgery, he has to be discharged from the inpatient rehab facility, and then wait to be readmitted again after surgery.  Then there is the issue of if there is room in a hospital to take him for the surgery, and if there is an open bed here after they discharge him. At least I got them to make sure he has some occupational therapy before he goes to the appointment. I like to feel I got a little of my money's worth.  Nobody wants to be liable for anything and plenty of red tape. So here we go again. I would love to get him outpatient intense rehab at this point, as I am so tired of this.

04/05/24 - Today is a really rough day. He was taken off food at midnight for any pending surgery. His last pain meds were 8am which he didn't keep down. He made it to the oral surgeon and had his jaw wired shut and 8 screws in the upper and lower jaw this afternoon. He was wreathing in pain when they were done due to the lack of his continued meds for so long. We couldn't get the pain meds in liquid form so there was even a longer delay. They ended up crushing the meds and putting them in apple juice and giving it to him in a syringe. He hadn't eaten for a day so his stomach felt very acidic. We can't have him vomit with a wired jaw.  The surgeons office asked that I stay with him tonight.  This is the most pain I have seen him in since the accident. He is miserable. I have tried to be positive with every day moving forward, but today was not a positive day. I feel bad for the kid. There was no making the pain go away. Surgery 3 in less than 2 weeks and down 13 pounds that he didn't have to lose.  I will look for the sunshine tomorrow.

04/06/24 - Today was a downer day. No forward movement. Just lots of pain from the jaw surgery. Too much pain to do physical therapy for the femur.

04/08/24 - Cole has now lost 16lbs and is so skinny. He has definitely changed in just 5 short days since getting to the rehab hospital. It is starting to take a toll on him.  His legs are as skinny as my arms. We have a meeting tomorrow with his medical team for his plan of care. We are hoping to get him out of there in the next few days so he can get home and start healing in his own setting.  Hopefully he can quickly regain the muscle he lost so quickly, although it is difficult when his jaw is wired shut. We can work on out-patient therapy instead. On the upside, they removed all the staples down his stomach in in his leg.

04/10/24 - Cole was going mentally and physically deteriorating rather fast staying at inpatient rehab.  He wasn't getting the nutrition he needed or wanted and was looking rather sickly. He wanted out. So today, he was discharged and we will begin outpatient treatment instead.    Thank you everyone for praying and reaching out and supporting him. It means the world to us!

04/16/24 - Cole instantly perked up when he left rehab as he was not getting the nutrition his body was used to.  We started liquifying regular food. Yes, you can make a chicken enchilada shake and yes, he loved it. I think in the 5 days he was home he gained back a pound or two. But he did get on the scale last night and he is currently down 27lbs!  That is alot for someone who was extremely fit with less than 10% body fat.  He was previously working out 2.5 hours per day and solid defined muscle. He is definitely anxious to get back to it as soon as possible. Now that the major injuries have been identified and dealt with for the last few weeks and he is moving around, all the other injuries are identifying themselves. Now we pray for the bones to heal properly. Looking at the CT scan of his face, with every bone broken and the split at each break well defined, I pray they will all fuse back together.  With all the bruising in his face basically gone, you would never know he is walking around with a completely broken face.  He looked at me and said,  “I can't believe I didn't break my forehead”.  Of course, I gave his the look and said, “What do you mean,? You broke that all the way across too! We have only been talking about the breaks for the last few weeks!”.  Lots of doctor appointments coming up in the next few weeks. This coming Friday will be 2 weeks with the jaw wired shut, so he is halfway through that.  He said he can't wait to slurp down some Olive Garden noodles. With the way the jaw broke, he will have life long issues with that.

04/19/24 - Cole had his first follow up with the oral surgeon today.  He let the doctor know that he could feel about a 1mm movement on his teeth. You wouldn't think that is much, but the doctor cranked down harder on the wires and now Cole is difficult to understand talking.  Hopefully, the wires come out in another 2 weeks.  Tuesday is his first follow up with the surgeon that put the rod in his leg.

05/02/24- Cole has had a lot of doctor appointments the last few weeks. He has gone to physical therapy 3x wk. We want to get him walking as soon as possible. We are having tests run to see if the brain is all good and brain bleed dissolved. This week he had an EEG and Doppler on his brain. We need to schedule a CT scan still, then follow up with the neurologist for results.  He was supposed to get the jaw unwired today but the doctor decided to leave it for another week.

05/10/24- I am happy to report that today they removed the screws and wires from Cole's and he is walking/limping slowly without his crutches!  Next week is the brain CT scan to see if the brain bleed has dissolved.

05/17/24 - Last week Cole had an EEG, Transcranial Doppler exam and Brain CT scan.  We met with the neurologist yesterday and all is well. The brain bleed is completely dissolved. The crutches are gone. He is getting better by the day.  He continues with physical therapy 3 times per week for his leg.  He is still down 25lbs and working on gaining that and all the muscle he lost back.

06/23/24 - Cole has been going to therapy several times per week to strengthen his leg muscles. He has had several follow ups with the surgeons that put the rod in his femur. She has cleared him for his next surgery on the same femur. That one will be to drill 2 holes in his hip bone so they can re-attach his torn labrum and shave down the femur a bit where the hip bone is rubbing on the femur.  Hopefully that will be the last of it.  He will get to start all over again with therapy as he will be non-weight bearing for several weeks. He hopes to have that surgery within the next month.

 

Organized by

Rena Cherick

Scottsdale, AZ, USA

Organizer