To make matters worse, and I’m not making this up, the transmission started to go out in our tow vehicle. UGH!!! In the middle of all this I found a transmission place, dropped off the car and rented a car to get back and forth between the campground and the hospital. It was determined that the car needed a new transmission so they found a used one and they installed it in the next few days.
Hopefully, you now have an idea of the situation I was facing. Here is how we, as a family, ended up dealing with it.
I made the decision to get Liz into a rehab hospital close to home. My daughter in law Renee found Brooks Rehab Hospital in Jacksonville, FL which is known for treating traumatic brain injury (TBI). As a member of FMCA we checked to see if Liz would qualify for there travel assistance and the initial contact indicated that she didn’t. I didn’t want to try to transfer her by ambulance as it was over 1000 miles and would take hours. Her condition was stable, but still quite serious. She was still in danger of having seizures or other serious complications. It was not clear if Blue Cross would pay for an air med transfer but we did make a request. Fortunately, Renee contacted Angel Medflight Air Ambulance. She had dealt with them on previous occasions in her job as a medical caseworker. They agreed to fly Liz from Illinois to Florida for a modest copay. Finally, we seemed to have something go our way.
So my son flew to Illinois to help me get the coach back to Georgia. I chose not to try to get FMCA assist to do this. They flew my wife out on a Monday and our two daughters in law, Renee and Jana met the plane in Florida and assisted in getting her into Brooks Rehab while my son and I returned with the RV. We arrived Wednesday morning and parked it at a campground near Jacksonville, FL. Liz stayed in the hospital there for four more weeks and I stayed at the campground. It was truly a coordinated family effort.
I’m happy to say that Liz’s recovery has been close to miraculous considering I thought she might die in my arms six weeks earlier. She is still not driving and has some memory issues, but the doctor says that her improvement should continue for up to two years, although the first six months she will improve the most. She got home the end of August and we were able to go on a cruise with our son and his wife over Thanksgiving. As with anything else you learn to adjust your lifestyle to accommodate your abilities. We are certainly thankful for all the support of our friends and family. We also continue to pray for Liz’s continued improvement in the coming year.
In the next post I will suggest what RV’ers should be thinking about with regard to emergencies that might arise.