On Wednesday close to 2pm, I was out watering my yard, Steve was in the garage and Sascha and Apollo were in the baby pool on the deck, when I heard a loud crash and then someone yelling: call 911! call 911! I knew immediately that something serious happened to my neighbor and good friend, Craig Brown. I knew because not more than ten minutes prior he was dropping off some flowers to me that his wife didn't have time to plant. I asked what he was up to and he told me about the deck project he and his contractor were working on. He wanted me to come see it so I told him I'd be over after Apollo went down for a nap.
Back to the story, I dropped the hose and ran as fast as I could to the house which is right next door to us. After running in the house and seeing that Craig had fallen off the deck, I ran as fast as I could to reach him (his wife was on the phone with 911 and the contractor was running around the neighborhood trying to find Ed (our neighbor)). I found Craig around back lying very still and flat with his face buried in the grass. I could see the blood. My heart sunk. I was in shock. All I could think was "not Craig! not Craig!" I knew he couldn't breathe in the position he was in so I lifted and turned his head just enough so he could breath. About a minute or so later Steve showed up and then the contractor and Ed. I kept Craigs head in my hands the whole time so I could keep it as steady as possible. Steve was down by his legs, the contractor was on the side and Ed was holding up a sheet to shield the hot sun. At first he was unconscious and making loud snoring noises. The guys decided we should put him on his side so he could breathe better. After that he started making very labored moaning noises which basically continued the whole time. The paramedics came pretty quickly, but in a situation like that it seems like they took forever. We were relieved to see them. They had me keep holding onto his head and asked me to hold his oxygen mask on too. Craig kept trying to pull it off (good sign) but I kept it in place. They were asking questions like what his middle name and birthdate were. I told them I didn't know. Craig started mumbling his middle name and birthdate (another good sign, brain activity). They had me keep his head steady while they rolled him onto the board to stabilize his head and strap him down. It wasn't until after they walked off with him to the ambulance that I started breaking down and would continue to do so, off and on for the remainder of the day. He's like family and to find him in that type of situation just broke my heart.
After making a stop at the hospital in Bremerton he was flown over to Harborview in Seattle to their trauma center where they're better equipped for these type of injuries. Long story short: his top two vertebrae that are closest to the skull are fractured, he has broken ribs, a punctured lung, spinal cord injury, a piece of skull broken at the base of his head and bleeding and pressure in the brain. The good news is that he does move his arms and legs. When asked to squeeze his hand or move his toes, he responds. They do have him pretty heavily sedated so he's not showing very much coherency. His lungs seem to be doing well. He was taken into surgery yesterday to have his vertebrae fused together (just to get him into position can take a couple of hours) and his blood pressure started rising. They decided to wait and let him rest more.
What happened from the contractor's point of view: Craig was working alongside him on his two-story back deck that didn't have the railing up yet. They both grabbed opposite ends of the door frame from the sliding glass door that was already out. When they started yanking it out, Craig must have lost his balance causing him to fall backwards and off the deck.
I'm just so glad he's alive. I think the fact that he takes such good care of himself and has such a positive attitude is probably what is keeping him alive. He's 71 years old and retired from the Navy. I hope and pray that he'll be able to have the strength to walk again. His injuries are very severe and he's always lived such an active life. I would see him outside all the time working on all sorts of projects. He's the one who helped us get rid of the racoon and patch up the hole in the house. He's also been there for us when we had the four day power outage and needed help with our generator. He was running around refilling ours and taking care of the other neighbors. He even brought Pops some Sorth Pole gear to wear that he had from when he used to live there. There's countless other things that he's done for us. He truly has a heart of gold! Please keep Craig in your prayers.
All went well at Sascha's baptism. I was on top of everything except to make sure to get a picture of them in their white clothing (grrrrrrr! (my favorite word lately)). Here's how the programs turned out:
Everyone on the program was exactly how Sascha wanted it. He had one of his best friends give the opening prayer and I gave the closing. Steve gave the talk on baptism and his primary teacher, Roberta Ryan gave the talk on the Holy Ghost. They were great talks. His piano teacher, Cami Segeberg helped out with being the chorister and playing the musical number while Sarah and her friend Chloe sang "Baptism." Thanks again Cami!!! Sarah also played the prelude music and the opening and closing songs. Bishop Frandsen actually wasn't able to be there, so brother Anderson (2nd counselor) filled in for him. We were pleased that Chris Byron (1st counselor) and his son Jacob (another of Sascha's buddies) were able to pop in as well. They had been over in Seattle and weren't going to be able to make it.
I am so proud of Sascha and so impressed by his faith. I felt the spirit strongly as he was both baptized and confirmed. Right before he and Steve were to get into the water, Sascha got very scared. Steve asked him if he wanted to say a little prayer. He did and said he felt great afterwards. That's the comfort of the Holy Ghost. Perfect timing!
Steve and Sascha afterwards. In the background: The Segebergs, Fyffes and Byrons Here's Sarah playing the piano:Notice all my boys have buzzes. I even gave one to Pops too. After the baptism we had the Fyffes, Segebergs and Redd's over for a barbecue. It was fun to be with everyone. It would have been fun having the Holcombs too. I guess Disneyland was more important! (haha)
I wanted to also add that Sascha got his very own scriptures (tradition when they get baptized) and woke up early Sunday morning (around 5am) and started reading them from the beginning. He said he read the whole first chapter! Then I noticed he was reading them all through Sacrament Meeting. And then again when we got home. I think he's excited about having new scriptures, what do you think?
It's late, I know, but I've been trying to get some programs printed out for Sascha's baptism. It's been the most challenging thing I've had to tackle all week. Besides dealing with another haircolor-gone-wrong fiasco. I tried to dye it back to my natural color but it went too dark. I even had my experts, Teesha and Sarah with me to help pick the right color to match my roots. GRRRRRRRRR! Now I look Emo. Teesha likes it of course.
Anyway, back to the program printing: to start out, I made the programs in MS Office just how I wanted them. I printed one out and then couldn't print out anymore because my magenta ran out. I always have extra ink on hand for times like these, but this one time, I didn't! So... after trying to think of what I could do I decided to take my files down to Pop's computer and use his printer. When I brought the files up, I realized he doesn't have MS Office. So.... I had to copy and paste and tweak it around to work in MS Word, which took some time. At least I was able to print out nine copies (one-sided) before it told me the black ink was out (I needed 20 total and double sided)! Can you believe my luck? AND Pop's usually has ink on hand as well. Not this time! So after watching a so/so fireworks show (the company was good though) which lasted until about 11:30, I decided to try out Sarah's printer. It was out of cyan and Sarah DID have extra, so I changed it out. I printed one copy and it looked horrible! I ran the head cleaner about three times and it still looked horrible. GRRRRRRRR! The universe DID NOT want me to get those programs printed out today I guess. So tomorrow (I mean today) I'll have to run over to Walmart or somewhere to buy ink. I usually buy on Ebay. It's easier on the wallet. Another GRRRRRRRR!
There. I'm sure I could think up some more, but I"ll be done for now. I've got to go catch some zzzzzzzzz's. I don't know what I'm going to do about my hair though. Sascha's baptism is at 5pm. Maybe I could wash it about 10 times to try to get it to tone way down? We'll see.... Good Nite Nurse!