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Old 06-30-09, 12:06 AM   #1
valygrl
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My friend broke her neck

Please see my new signature, and if you can, help even a little, it will be so much appreciated.

My friend Tacos (nickname for Satoko) fell asleep at the wheel and wrecked her car, breaking her neck. (No she wasn't drinking, she doesn't at all.) She is in her early 30's and one of the most active, psyched and positive people around. She's been on the 'dirtbag' climbing circuit for the last few years, living in a tent and more recently () in her car, in rock climbing areas across the US and Canada. She and my boyfriend have done some amazing climbing together - I know her as my houseguest and camp buddy, she is soooo psyched and friendly and always has a smile.

She's currently in the hospital in Casper WY, where she knows no one. She has a little feeling in her arms and legs and is now breathing better, but just to get home to her family in Japan she'll need 2 full time caregivers to fly with her.

Send some positive energy, a prayer if you do that, or some money if you can spare a little.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:19 AM   #2
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OMG. Sending good thoughts and positive karma to Satoko-san!!! I'll try to help when I can.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:35 AM   #3
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I don't drink and drive, I don't even talk on the phone and drive. But sometimes I'm really bad about driving while tired. It's a horrifying experience, especially in advanced stages.

I'm very sorry to hear about your friend, and hope for nothing but the best in her recovery.
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Old 06-30-09, 05:44 AM   #4
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prayers....and when I get the chane, I will go to one of those links.
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Old 06-30-09, 07:03 AM   #5
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Wow - that's too bad! Hope she has a speedy and FULL recovery!
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Old 06-30-09, 07:12 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone. My boyfriend is going to visit her today, so at least she'll have a little relief from the boredom. I can't even imagine....
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Old 06-30-09, 08:27 AM   #7
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Your friend is in my prayers. I'm so sorry to hear this.

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Old 06-30-09, 10:58 AM   #8
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my best wishes to your friend.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:08 PM   #9
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Since it sounds as if she is a Japanese citizen, I hope that social work at the hospital has contacted the Japanese consulate in San Francisco to see what can be done to repatriate their citizen back home. I have discovered that some countries with national health systems will do medical evacuations of their citizens via air ambulance, commercial flights or other appropriate means.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:28 PM   #10
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Thanks all.

MillCreek, I don't know the details at this point, but my boyfriend will be up there in a few hours and I'll pass your comments along to him.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:44 PM   #11
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Best wishes to her, I hope she heals up well and quickly.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:56 PM   #12
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Good luck to her. I hope everything works out.
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Old 07-01-09, 06:31 PM   #13
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I'm going to sticky this thread. I am praying for Tacos and hoping for her speedy recovery.
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Old 07-01-09, 06:45 PM   #14
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Thank you Siu, thank you kaotikgrl, thank you all. I'm so moved. My friend can use all the positive vibes she can get.
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Old 07-01-09, 06:56 PM   #15
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valygrl, so sorry to hear about your friend. please send updates as you can, I'll be thinking about her!
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Old 07-01-09, 08:52 PM   #16
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Thanks everyone.
Here's Tacos on top of a desert tower last month,
picture by my boyfriend, who climbed it with her:

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Old 07-01-09, 09:13 PM   #17
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Any progress?
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Old 07-01-09, 09:14 PM   #18
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Her attitude and spirit will get her through this. She clearly is a determined and driven person.

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Old 07-01-09, 11:30 PM   #19
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My prayers are hers.
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Old 07-02-09, 11:47 AM   #20
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So sorry to hear, all my best wishes for a full and speedy recovery.
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Old 07-02-09, 11:59 AM   #21
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If it helps...

My brother broke his neck in a car accident many years ago. No nerve or spinal cord damage (thank God!). He spent a week in traction to re-align his neck He ended up having three vertebrae permanently clamped and fused together with bone from his hip. He spent several months in a halo. It was a harrowing experience for all of us. To listen to him tell the story (which he does NOT like to do) is terrifying.

Now, he is maybe a tiny bit shorter thank he would have been, can't turn his head quite as far as he once could, lives with some stiffness and pain, and has a wicked 10 inch scar down the back of his neck. Otherwise, he's pretty much normal. You'd really never know unless you saw the scar.

Not sure whether that helps or makes you more frightened. I tell the story to let you know that one can recover very well from a broken neck. I'm sure my brother will have some arthritis when he gets older. He had the accident at the age of 19 and He's 35 now. Aside from the aforementioned stiffness and some pain, he lives a perfectly normal life.
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Old 07-02-09, 12:11 PM   #22
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Thanks msincredible, thanks for sharing your brother's story, sneefy.

Tacos, unfortunately, does have some kind of spinal cord damage, the extent of which remains to be seen. She's is remaining very positive and not talking about the possibilities, just focusing on what she can do now to get better, which is start physical therapy as soon as she can.
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Old 07-03-09, 10:15 PM   #23
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The climbing gym in Casper WY is donating all their day-pass proceeds and membership fees until next Tuesday to help Tacos fly home. THANK YOU!!!
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Old 07-04-09, 06:09 PM   #24
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Thoughts and payers on the way. Had to fight off the drowsy's myself today. It can be quite scary.
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Old 07-04-09, 06:24 PM   #25
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Thanks USAZorro -- be careful, your life can change in an instant.
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