Sunday, July 21, 2013

A Soldier Needs Our Help

TRAVERSE CITY -- A family's 4th of July celebrations took a turn for the worst when a young man nearly drowned. Family members were able to save him in time, but there's a long road to recovery for Army National Guardsman Chris Schenk.
Schenk served two tours overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it's what happened close to home that may truly change his life.
The Schenk family had been parked out on the Torch Lake sandbar, getting ready to watch the 4th of July fireworks show when Chris decided to go for a swim. His mother saw him motionless at the bottom of the lake a couple minutes later, but wasn’t sure if something was wrong.
Chris’s dad says at first he thought his son was just trying to hold his breath, but the situation went from a joke to terrifying in an instant.
“It’s not like in the movies where they bounce back, cough up the water and they're okay,” said Brian Schenk, Chris' father.
Brian Schenk jumped into the waist-deep water to pull out his 29 year old son.
“It was really hard to be blessed enough to save him from drowning and then turn around and find out that he's got a neck injury that's right up at the top vertebrae: C1," the elder Schenk said.
When Chris dove into the lake, he hit his head, leaving him paralyzed from the neck down and unable to speak.
Doctors say the damage appears permanent. But family members say, if there's any way to improve and beat the odds, Chris will find it.
“He’s the kind of person that if the hospital told him to sit still for six weeks, he'd do it," Schenk said. "He follows doctor’s orders like sergeant’s orders."
Family members have been by Chris' side all hours of the day, with people in the waiting room and sleeping by his side in the Intensive Care Unit.
“He was one of the reasons I knew I could join the military," said Elizabeth Stayman, Schenk's cousin. "I went with Air Force, which is a little bit different of a path, but just wanting to serve his country... I wanted to do the same.”
Chris's father wants that inspiration to spread. “There's no question about his honor… So what we're hoping to get is a sense of a worldwide family that realizes our soldiers are like that.”
There are two separate fundraiser accounts set up in Chris's honor: one from his family and one from Chris's military brothers. 
They're hoping to raise money to help with medical bills and transportation for treatment. They also want to get a van with handicap accessibility.
Schenk will remain in the ICU for at least another week before heading to the University of Michigan for rehabilitation and maximizing abilities. The family is hoping he'll be able to regain communication skills.
They say Chris was in great condition before the accident, so they hope he’ll be a prime candidate for some trial treatments like cell regeneration.
Schenk is a father-to-be. His girlfriend is pregnant with his son. She is due in November.
Over the 4th of July weekend, SGT Chris Schenk had an unfortunate boating accident that has left him in the hospital in pretty bad shape, and has left the rest of us waiting impatiently for answers. What will happen in the near future is out of our hands and no one is certain which direction his condition will go.
One thing that we do know is that Chris and his family will need our help. Whatever happens, there will be a long road ahead for all parties involved, and his friends and Hooligan brothers are being called upon to do what they can to support the challenging road that will most certainly follow.
Chris is an 11 year combat veteran who started his career with the 125th infantry in November of 2002. He deployed to Iraq in 2006, and to Afghanistan in 2011. He also has a girlfriend who is 7 months pregnant, and he will be the father of a baby boy in the very near future.
The Hooligans of the 125th infantry, and their friends and family are raising as much money as we possibly can to donate to Chris and his family in this extremely challenging time. Please help us in our quest to fight for our brother as he has fought for us and his country. All proceeds will go to the family of SGT Chris Schenk where they will be able to use it however will help them best.

Here is the latest news from the hospital that Chris is in. Chris suffered serious injury to his spinal cord and has been left paralyzed from the neck down. He now rests on life support and has been given the prognosis of vent dependent quadriplegic. The dr's speculate the damage is permanent, but the hooligan brothers know that an infantry man's odds are different from the average citizen. His family is in search of alternate options and other opinions as to what the possibilities are. Within the next few weeks, they are looking at moving him to a different location that specializes in this type or rehab, and they're hoping it will advance his condition in the right direction. The family is taking on a lot of personal expenses, and really need our help to get him going in the right direction.
During a recent visit with Chris, we could see that he was in generally good spirits, but now he's trying to get used to the trach they put in. He was mouthing words to us, and asking us questions and stuff. Seeing how we were doing and what we were up to these days. No sound came out so we had to decipher what he was saying, but he was smiling the entire time i was in the room with him and asking his sister for ice chips as he is now allowed to have them on occasion.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Family Farm in Jeopardy from Communist Michigan

The state of Michigan is bullying a small family farm because the owner spoke out against a new ruling against small farms and because of all of his pigs, he owns 3 that resemble Russian Boars (which Michigan contends is an invasive species).

Help them fight back if you can