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Our Son, Dylan

by Linda Stimeling
(Akron, IN)

Christmas 2011 with Mikayla

Christmas 2011 with Mikayla

My step-son, Dylan was in a sever car accident on January 3, 2012. He is 17. He was traveling to work, from school on that Tuesday. He flipped his t-top camaro into a field and it landed on it's top. He suffered no obvious injuries... he was also awake and alert on the scene..not even a scratch from the neck down. No broken bones, no internal injuries..nothing...except head trauma...he lost consciousness once cut from the car and placed in an ambulance awaiting the helicopter to land to transport him... He is been in the S/T ICU since...16 days later, his brain has stopped swelling and bleeding (day 7), he is off all of his sedation meds (When he was brought into the hospital he was already unconscious.) and he is on the lowest dose of pain meds...The doctors said he has nothing holding him back at this point. it's up to him to wake up.
My husband (his father) is beside himself. His health is nothing short of disastrous. He has trouble breathing (having panic attacks) and his chest hurts him all the time...not to mention he hit the bottom edge of the gene pool and also has bi-polar disease. This goes untreated to to lack of medical ins and $. He is so strong. Such a wonderful person and Dylan is so strong too. He is such a wonderful gift...A & B student, doesn't drink, do drugs and has never been in trouble with the law. Why is our faith and gift being jostled in my very hands. This boy has to wake up. Our son HAS TO WAKE UP...please someone. Tell me there is a chance?

Dylan's inter cranial pressures was being measured by and ICP stem. Tube that stuck out of his head and a catheter passed through it to the middle of the brain to measure the pressures.. they were floating between 7-9 steady. They never had to do anything more than open the drainage tube when pressures would spike. They really don't like to see the pressure go above 18. They would then come back down on there own. It has been as high as 50. Once his brain settled and stopped swelling and the bleeding stopped, the pressures didn't really rise too much above 24 once, maybe twice a day...opened the drain and they'd go right back down. he has been agitated though once we tried to start taking him off on his sedation and pain meds to see how he reacted to stimulation. They always had to end up giving him some of his sedation meds, because his agitation would make his pressures soar. but only just for a few minutes, if that. They have never had to do evasive measures to get the pressure to come back down.. They also said because he is naturally a deep sleeper, that it may take him longer to wake up. The Dr. said now two full days ago that there is nothing holding him back. He is breathing on his own and has a PEG (feeding tube) he also had a trach done because they couldn't allow the ventilator tube to be down his throat for longer than 2 weeks due to infection from the tube.. Is there anyone out there with a story to comfort me...Please keep me believing I still have a son named Dylan. I just want him to wake up!

Comments for Our Son, Dylan

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My niece
by: Anonymous

My niece was in a car accident (24/6/14). She has been kept in an induced coma since then as her brain keeps spiking past 30. They have put a drain in and also opened up her head at points to release the pressure. We dont know the outcome at this stage, but are all hoping for the best. I have passed your email onto my sister as I feel she may get in touch just so that someone who has been through this with a child can reassure her. Thank you for this site.

Brain dead cells
by: Anonymous

Hello, my son nicholas is 24 years old. He got bristly attack at a restaurant on nov 16, 2013. He was left to die. He had no oxygen to the brain for about 20 min. Doctors finally got a pulse. He was in Icu hooked up to machines for 6 days. Doctors put my son to a step down unit as stable condition. Our son came out of a coma on the 7th day. He had a trache number 6 for 8 days. The doctors said my son was a vegetated state. I told the doctor I didn't believe this and I didn't claim it. We have a lot of fAith and people praying for our son. Our son proved the doctors wrong, he started
To talk and say a few words. They closed the trache he iS breathing on his own now. These are small improve t's from the grace of God. My son now is going to another step down unit the neurologist for the brain, then to rehab and speech. Don't give up faith and hope on your son.y son Nicholas is a history in the making. He was already coded gone and God brought him back to me. Maria (mom)

by: Anonymous

My son wasn't given a chance , I pray for all your miracles , I had No say he was a Donor , within 24 hrs they declare them brain dead , couldn't do anything as I lightly tickle his foot and he would move ,

Time to heal
by: Anonymous

my loving niece was found by her boyfriend,they both had been known to do drugs,I say drugs I mean "meth" but she and him had been over at my dad's,her pawpaw's the night before seemd fine,but my dad not knowing this man she was with,didn't want him there,Gina could stay but she lied and said they were married..anyway dad said they could stay but by then this man was gone,Gina left and went after him,but the next day Jan 03,1013..she was found hung by this man,we don't know what took place or if it was maybe an accident..Gina was airlifted to Erlanger Hospital right away but Doc's gave her poor chance of pulling through,she did not breath on her own and was on life support for 8 days...I wanted to bring her home but her brothers and even her mom was not given any hope at all,so they took her off machine last Friday(Jan 11)I have regretted not fighting this but I am only her Aunt,and had no say in the matter,but after reading this I wished they had gave her just a little more time!!she was 36 and had 3 children..two sons one 19,15,and a little redhead girl that is 4...

In reply
by: Linda Stimeling

I have more problems trying to comment on this site! Anyone with a similar situation, please please email me about questions on brain injuries at

Dylan has been through so much. One year tomorrow marks the day we wish to never remember again. We are lucky. Our son survived with a completely different lifestyle and personality. I cannot begin to thank God for leaving him here with us. Frustrations of the past year have came and went and came and went. We take one day at a time and deal with it. We love our son so very much. However anyone who has been with a loved one through a long term TBI, knows what I mean. It is so hard to go through. To see the changes it has instilled in him. Everything is harder for him. School work, friends, socializing.. He used to be so shy and quiet. Good looking with a personality to match and tons and tons of friends. He is so much more bold than he used to be. Louder, vulgar, and often inappropriate, sexually.

But what really matters is that he is here. He is still healing...

prayers for all
by: Anonymous

Thank you for responding. I was so desperate to talk with anyone with this same experience, to know any information that could ease my mind.
Sadly, because every brain injury is so different. Dylan was a healthy 170 lb 6'2" athletic body. The fact that he was so healthy worked in his favor. The fact that he stayed in a deep coma for 33 days, made his chance at 100% recovery more difficult. He is a senior this year in high school and overall, is just fine. However some things have changed. Before Dylan was a quiet, happy intelligent young man. His personality has changed from that quiet boy to someone with a lot of personality. He rarely has NOTHING to say at any given moment. He is now about 230 lbs and his equilibrium is a tad off which leaves him a little wobbley. His personality has changed and more than likely we are seeing our new Dylan. He had Damaged his frontal lobe where decision making and personality are decided. He is more outgoing, and he just turned 18. His personality reflects that of someone who is about 14-15. He is alive and that's what matters. We have a long road of recovery. The likelihood that your girlfriend will recover 100% is a guess no one can make but her. Keep her focused on recovery. That's the main thing. She needs to be pushed further than she's expected to go. If you have any questions please email me at . Good luck and God speed.

My girlfriend's accident
by: Anonymous

Hello, I'm not sure if you still check this but please respond if you do. My girlfriend was in a really bad car accident on November 20, 2012. She was t-boned by a truck on the drivers side in her 1998 Honda accord. The car had a 2 foot indention from the truck. She was in the STICU for 2 and a half weeks. The put in a trache and moved her feeding tube directly to her stomach. She was moved this past Friday to a rehab center. She is awake but is not aware of everything just yet. She combed her hair a little and washed her forehead a couple days ago. She has made huge progress so far and I would really like to know how Dylan is doing. Thank you

anyone wanting to talk and share me
by: Dylans Step-mom, Linda

Thank you very much for the email address. However, I had sent you an email and it didnt go thru. You and anyone else can connect with me thru my Email :

I appreciate all the support from all if you. You have no idea (...well maybe you do!) How that makes me feel! Very blessed...

Our Sons have Simliar Stories
by: Kim

I hope you are still checking this site as my son to was in a tragic car accident 1 year to the week before Dylan. Karl was in a coma for over 10 days and in the hospital for 3 months. He had to relearn how to walk, eat...all those things we all take for granted. He has come so very far since that tragic January night in 2011. At that same day the world was watching Gabby Gifford and her family living through the same situation we were.

I could have used a friend at that time that had been through what i was experiencing and would love to be able to talk if you would like to. I am leaving my email so we can connect.


by: Dylan's step-mom

Dylan is home today. He finally came home on march 26. He's walking and he is talking! However, Dylan isnt the same as he used to be. he talks a lot more, And it is brutally honest. He went through volitile stage That he was out of that in 2 weeks. He has full knowledge in memory of things before the accident. he remembers all of us to 't'. It was such a very hard and long rough road... I feel for anybody in a situation like we had. Dylan will be on meds for the rest of his life.
Some really exciting news is that he just attended his prom with his girlfriend. She stuck by his side every minute of everyday. I couldn't ask for anything more simply because he's alive.

From January 3 to May 8th Update on Dylan
by: Dylan's step-mom

Dylan remained unconscious in trauma icu for about 3 and a half weeks. Every time we tried to take him off is sedation meds he would be agitated and his icp with spike. 2 weeks after his accident we had to put a trach in and take out the ventilator due 2 irritation. They were worried that the throat irritation could turn into an infection And in his condition, is extremely serious... As if it wasn't serious enough already..
We had to be extremely quiet and show basically no emotion. Visiting hours were limited to a couple hours at a time, with an hour or 2 break in between.
It was so tough leaving the hospital...
on the third week dylan started to breathe on his own through the trach! It was such slow progress but when it progressed we were so happy, yet guarded. No mri, which would show wether or not there was shearing on the brain..shearing is a term regarding the tiny brain fibers on the outer brain thats attached to the skull. Shearing is where those tiny fibers are stretched or ripped apart. This is not reversable.
By the time he started breathing on his own we were able to take out the icp monitor That measured his brain pressure. His eyes started opening but there was not really any response. We talked to him just as normal as can be. Every now and again his eyes would follow somebody walking in front of his bed. This continued for another 3 or 4 weeks. In the meantime he was transferred to 3rd floor out of icu and pediatrics unit.
He was transferred in that condition to indianapolis indiana to RHI (rehabilitation hospital of indiana). He was there for 2 weeks in the condition that he was And we finally had 1 break through.. He spoke! It started with 1 word at a time. In a week he was answering the questions that we were asking but nothing more. We had a rough idea that march 26th was going to be his last day at RHI. In a couple of weeks his behavior change to volatile. He punched a couple of nurses and his mother, sister snd girlfriend. The doctors were encouraged by this behavior even though for us and for some of the staff it was a very rough time. This is expected behavior when progress goes forward. Right at 2 weeks his behavior changed again as well as his speech pattern. We found out that he remember all of us from before the accident including his girlfriend. He remembers his favorite color his address his phone number. He even remembered the passcode on his phone to unlock it. He continued to improve physically as well as mentally.
Today dylan is home. He did come home on march 26th. He requires full attention due to fall risk. He's back to his normal diet and takes meds every morning and evening. He is not the same Dylan as before the accident. He talks a lot more and is very honest. I'd rather have him this way then not at all! It was a very rough experience but he is alive and he just attended his prom with his girlfriend on may 5th. Tears flowed of happiness because january third may have made that day very different!

motor cycle accident
by: Anonymous

I don't know if you still check this or not, but I was wondering about Dylans improvement? My big brother was just in a motor cycle accident and the symptoms sound almost exactly alike. It has only been three days since the accident, and he is still sedated but they have tried taking him off the sedation medicine and he only responds to pain but not to commands, his icp only jumps when they move him, and we also have been told above twenty is not good. it stays around 7-14. and has only went above twenty once, after they moved him and then it went back down. Is there hope my brother will wake up? I feel like there is, and I keep praying and praying, and I will be praying for Dyaln, I just want my big brother back. thanks for taking the time to read this.

by: Living a nightmare

My cousin was in an accident 10 weeks ago. They did a craniotomy to relieve the pressure. His got to a 22 once and they told us anything over 20 was not good. He had his skull put back on 2 weeks ago. He was in a coma for about 4-5 weeks. He still has a trach and a PEG tube.....though they are going to start down sizing his trach this week. He doesn't speak...YET! He has started responding to command quite a bit but seems to be getting aggitated. He has a long road ahead of him, but he wasn't even supposed to be here. Three days after the accident, the papers were signed and ready to go to turn off the machines. By the grace of God, a doctor gave some home and the family chose to go through with the craniotomy. They tell us it will 12-18 months before we even know what he is capable of doing. He will recover....we believe it!

Dont give up
by: Anonymous

This is so sad for you, but there is hope I know of someone who has a sister who was in a car accident one month ago and
suffered severe brain stem injury and was not expected to live. It has been one month and she still has not woken, though tiny improvements. Her brother has posted a site for all her friends to view her progress on facebook. this is the page...Dont Give Up. Simone Blackas Journey.

I wish you all the best for your son and pray that he returns to you.X

Your son Dylan
by: Anonymous

In March 2010, our son overdosed on prescription meds. He was found blue and barely breathing. He was airlifted to a hospital where he was in a coma for three weeks and then taken to a rehab facility where he was still in a coma for another four weeks doing very little except grinding his teeth constantly. He finally woke up and has spent the last two+ years in rehab and then coming home for more rehab. He is doing better; but will never be the same. Don't despair about Dylan, he will wake up but will need rehab. I am praying for you and your family; God watches over all. Your son Dylan is a handsome wonderful young man.

Your son Dylan
by: Anonymous

In March 2010, our son overdosed on prescription meds. He was found blue and barely breathing. He was airlifted to a hospital where he was in a coma for three weeks and then taken to a rehab facility where he was still in a coma for another four weeks doing very little except grinding his teeth constantly. He finally woke up and has spent the last two+ years in rehab and then coming home for more rehab. He is doing better; but will never be the same. Don't despair about Dylan, he will wake up but will need rehab. I am praying for you and your family; God watches over all. Your son Dylan is a handsome wonderful young man.

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