Facility: Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Emmanuel is a six-year-old who was involved in a motor vehicle accident with a tree. He was an unrestrained passenger and his father died in the crash.
Emmanuel suffered a traumatic brain injury with increased intracranial pressure. Other injuries included a grade IV liver laceration, head fracture/laceration, pneumothorax, pulmonary contusions, right orbital floor fractures, right proximal and distal humerus fractures, right distal radius fracture and multiple left foot fractures. He also sustained a fractured right elbow. Due to being on contact precautions, Emmanuel also had the challenge of needing to remain in his room for many of his therapies.
A simple ride to the store with his father brought very significant changes and challenges into this little boy’s life. While most first graders are eagerly looking forward to playing all day during summer vacation, Emmanuel is looking forward to being able to walk without needing anadult to hold on to his gait belt. He will be going to therapy this summer to improve his ability to think more clearly and to increase his memory skills.
As if all of this did not present beg enough challenges, Emmanuel will also be learning how to live without the presence of his father in his life. This may prove to be the biggest challenge of all in the lives of Emmanuel and his wonderful family.
When I recall my time working with Emmanuel, I will think of the little boy with the huge smile. He always worked very hard during his therapy sessions…and in his free time, he loved to try to shoot hoops through a basketball net taped to his door. His warm heart and friendly disposition would draw everyone by his room door to talk to him as they walked down the hall. At first glance, it would be difficult to believe that he has been through so much at such a young, impressionable age.
I am sure that being honored as Hero of the Month would mean the world to Emmanuel and his family. I cannot think of a little boy who would be more deserving.