Willy Westman

First post: Nov 14, 2018 Latest post: Jan 13, 2019
On Saturday evening, after shooting his deer close to Lancaster, he was traveling on HWY 59, hit a patch of ice and hit an approach.  His truck rolled end over end and threw him into the back seat where he was wedged.   Someone passing by arrived on the scene and called 911.  Hallock EMT, Lancaster Fire Department and Lancaster First Responders arrived on the scene.  He was transported by ambulance to Kittson Memorial Healthcare Center.  From there, it was determined he broke his back and was life-flighted to Sanford Hospital in Fargo.  It was determined that he severed his spine around the T7 vertebrae where his back broke, which means he is paralyzed from that spot down.  He also broke 7 of his ribs, punctured his right lung, fractured his cheekbone, and his left heel detached from his foot.  He was awake, responding and remembered the whole accident.   He was admitted into the hospital and was monitored.  For the first 5-6 hours he was doing well, responding to everything and stable.  From there, things started going downhill, he started having difficulty breathing, coughing up blood, and it was determined then his right lung had collapsed.  He was then put on the ventilator and sedated as he kept trying to pull it out.  They also had to put restraints on him, as we all know Willy, we know him well enough to know he was trying to pull it out and sit up, even with a broken back.   The willpower in this kid is astonishing.  They were hoping to do surgery Monday, but his lungs just weren't stabilized enough to be safe to do surgery. So most of Monday was sedation, monitoring, and waiting.  Monday night went well, his lungs improved and they were once again hopeful for surgery.  Tuesday he stayed stable, they were able to reduce his PEEP level from 19 to 16, which is the amount of oxidization being pumped into his lungs as he wasn't producing enough of his own oxygen.  So as of right now, Tuesday evening, we are waiting for more lung improvement with a PEEP of  8-10.  Surgery is looking like late this week as long as we have continued lung improvement.  We are eternally grateful for the amount of prayers and support the community and family and friends have shown.  We feel the prayers, we feel the love, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.  We also want to thank all the paramedics, firefighters, EMT's, doctors and nurses.  Without each and everyone of you, this situation could have had a different outcome, so we are forever in debt with gratitude for all the wonderful care.