An update on Ernest Russell “Rusty” Simms, our friend from Oakland’s Skyline High School and Cal-Berkeley, who was hit by a car, or as it was described “was involved in a pedestrian-vehicle accident walking in Berkeley, CA.” The last report, the first one, was that Rusty was in critical condition. This is what Patty Lee Horan initially posted on the GoFundMe page for Rusty she created:
On Tuesday, April 2, Russell “Rusty” Simms was involved in a pedestrian-vehicle accident walking in Berkeley, CA. Russ sustained traumatic injuries and has been in the hospital, fighting for his life. To date, he remains in critical condition in ICU, but stable. He will need extensive rehab for all of his injuries, but presently is still heavily sedated. The amount of reconstructive surgery is yet to be determined. As a former Skyline High School classmate of Rusty, I am working with several other concerned friends who expressed a desire for a GoFundMe campaign to assist Russell Simms any way we can. His road to recovery is going to be a long one. There is no doubt the medical expenses will be extensive. Please consider a donation of any amount to help Russ and his family as our classmate, teammate, brother, cousin, nephew, uncle, colleague, friend. Our ability to help as one community of friends and family could be Russ’ best motivation to overcome this setback and restore to full health and happiness. Thank you for your prayers and consideration of support.
Since then, the campaign has raised $11,491 of its $15,000 goal! That’s excellent news and a testament to the great community of friends that make up Rusty’s circle, and also former students of both Skyline High and Cal.
Patty has posted two new updates. They are below:
April 11, 2019 **STATUS UPDATE**
Rusty is fighting his way back. Surgery to repair fractures to his leg and ankle have been performed. He will undergo surgery today to repair his arm. Rusty suffered severe head trauma, so for the past week he was under heavy sedation. He is somewhat aware and responding slightly to his environment now, and knows when his family is present. Rusty’s condition is stable and he is intubated. However, he does not know where he is. Cautious optimism, but improving.
Per the family request, please do not call or visit the hospital at this time.
April 12, 2019 (Fri) **STATUS UPDATE** (from Rusty’s Mom!) Rusty is still under heavy sedation but remains stable; more problems are surfacing, however. Plans for extubation (removal of tracheal tube) will be next week, to see if he can breathe on his own. His lungs were badly bruised in the accident, intubation to assist his breathing was necessary. Keep fighting Rusty!!
April 16, 2019
**STATUS UPDATE** Rusty remains sedated but stable in ICU. His medical team is trying to wean him off the tracheal tube, but he’s developed fluid in his lungs (which were also bruised in the accident), so they are managing that complication as well. Rusty suffered a stroke as a result of the accident. The artery that supplies a certain part of his brain was damaged and may have an impact on his language/communication skills. This is a concern in his recovery but they will have to wait and see. The family is hopeful and taking Rusty’s progress one day at a time. **If you would like to send a positive message to the Simms Family, there is a comment field on the GFM cover page. You do not have to make a donation to submit a comment. They will see your message of hope and support!***
April 19, 2019
Rusty had a tracheostomy* placed a day ago allowing for weaning of sedation and ventilation support. He seems much more comfortable and is starting to open his eyes more. He isn’t off ventilator yet but settings low.
*opening surgically created through the neck into the trachea (windpipe)
**If you would like to send a positive message to the Simms Family, there is a comment field on the GFM cover page. You do not have to make a donation to submit a comment. Your words and prayers of support are greatly appreciated!