“He could go all the way, 50, 40, 30, one man to beat, he lowers his head and is tackled at the 22 yard line. What a spectacular run. He just went over 100 yards for the day. What’s this? He’s still down, he has not moved since being tackled after that great run.” At one of the greatest moments of his football career, to date, he found great tragedy. Ryan was left with only hope for the future.
The announcer cried out, “Ryan Wies is not getting up!” Ryan was the 14 year old star tailback for his high school JV football team. At that moment Ryan laid immobile. The paramedics had been called and were on their way. Ryan was unconscious when the paramedics arrived.
The paramedics then rushed Ryan to the Lake Geneva hospital. When Ryan finally, became conscious, he was very scared he did not know where he was or how he got there. All he saw was lights and a white textured ceiling, he then realized that he was on his back. At that point Ryan tried to move, but couldn’t, he began to cry as he became more scared and terrified. Five minutes later, a man wearing what looked like a white robe with his name stitched on it, walked into the room. The man said to Ryan “Hello Ryan my name is Dr. Albert, you are probably wondering how you got here. You were playing football and you were severely injured (Ryan could not remember that he was playing football, at the time). You were unconscious for some time.” “How long?” Ryan asked, “For about nine hours, but anyway, when you were tackled you suffered from an explosion fracture of the C-4. Which means that the fourth vertebrae in your neck has, basically, exploded into several little pieces. The good news is you may have surgery to repair the vertebrae. I f you don’t have the surgery, you……..may never walk again.” Ryan began to cry. At this time the doctor explained the risky and lengthy procedure. Dr. Albert then said, “I’m going to leave you alone, so you can talk to your family about the procedure.”
Three hours later Ryan was getting surgery. The surgery took six and a half hours. The surgeons had to use titanium alloy to fully repair the bone. Before they could put the titanium alloy in Ryan’s neck, they had to remove all the pieces of bone to prevent any complications. When they were done with the surgery they decided to put Ryan in a halo.
When Ryan came out he was in a halo (A halo is a mechanism that gives the spine support for healing. The halo that Ryan had was connected to his head and hips. A halo is connected by drilling screws into the designated areas.). Ryan did not feel any different, but he did not like the way that he looked. He felt as if he was a robot, but an immobile robot.
After four days Ryan was starting to get feeling in his fingers and toes. The doctors were astonished with how fast he got feeling, but the doctors informed Ryan that it was going to be a long recovery process with much physical therapy. The doctors gave Ryan the option to go home at the end of the month or stay at the hospital for observation.
At the end of the month Ryan decided to go home. He was very happy to go home and be with his family and friends. When Ryan got home he was greeted by family and friends. He was very excited to see different people as opposed to doctors and nurses. Ryan realized he really didn’t want to be home, because he could not go out and be with his friends and have fun. Instead he was at home and could only think about having fun and began to be very depressed. So he decided he was going to do all that he could so he could be out with his friends.
When a person breaks there neck it can depress a person very much. All that the person wants to do he/she can’t, they can only want and think about it. It can be a huge set back to a person. When or if they get better they feel as if they have to start all over (depending on how badly they were injured). It’s almost as if the person feels as if they are reborn. Starting back all over when you are a teenager is hard. The recovery process for such an injury makes the person feel as if they could do anything, because of how long and hard it is, there’s no room for quitting.
Four months later Ryan had gotten all of his feeling back, which doctors thought was unreal. Ryan had been doing physical therapy for his fingers and feet, then legs, arms, chest, and finally the neck. The recovery process was very difficult for Ryan, but he wanted to get stronger so he could be with his friends and have fun.
Although Ryan had only gained 60% of his strength back, he was walking. He was still weak, but he could do all the things his friends could do, just not as much or as long. It just goes to show that with a little dedication and will power that a person can overcome the odds.