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The past several years, Randy & I have spent our summers vacationing at Lake Vallecito, Colorado located NE of Durango. This year we decided to stay through the Fall to see the Aspens change to their vibrant yellows.
Monday June 19, we borrowed a jeep and traveled to Engineer Pass with friends Bryan & Leslie. We stopped for lunch at an old cabin to take in the sites and experience God's glorious creation. Randy grabbed a coke and headed towards the trail/roadway. A few minutes later, Bryan saw Randy lying on the ground. Randy stated that he slipped on some rock and hit his neck. He couldn't move any part of his body.
Bryan and Leslie immediately headed down the mountain in order to find cell service so they could call for help, while I stayed with Randy. Passersby on ATV's stopped and set up a tarp as a makeshift tent to provide shelter from the direct sun and unseasonably warm temperatures. They stayed with us, shared their water and jackets to cushion our prone bodies and, most importantly, prayed for Randy I believe they were sent from God to help us!
The mountain terrain was too rough to transport Randy by ground ambulance, thus Life Flight was called in to airlift him to St Mary's Medical Center in Grand Junction. It was nearly 5 hours after his fall that the helicopter was finally able to get him off the mountain, due to our location, the altitude, heat, weight, etc.
The initial assessment by his medical team brought us news no one wants to hear. The paralysis Randy was experiencing from the chest down was caused by bone spurs that compressed his spinal cord in the C3 and C4 area of his spinal column and would likely be permanent. I thanked the doctor and said that while I appreciated his knowledge and expertise, we need to wait to see what our Great Physician had in mind The morning of Tuesday, June 20, shortly before the scheduled surgery, the surgeon learned that there was some feeling in Randy's lower arms and upon examination, there even some movement in his toes. Randy underwent surgery to remove bone spurs from his neck and stabilization of his spinal column.
The only certainty, at this point, is that we are believers in Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior and He is holding Randy in His arms. He has ordained all of our steps and will bring glory from this tragedy. Your prayers and love are needed and appreciated.