16-year-old Hastings student making progress at hospital; now out of a comaArea News
-- The 16-year-old Hastings student injured in a crash here on Oct. 9 is showing progress at Gillette Children’s hospital in St. Paul.
By: Chad Richardson , Pierce County Herald
HASTINGS, Minn. -- The 16-year-old Hastings student injured in a crash here on Oct. 9 is showing progress at Gillette Children’s hospital in St. Paul.
Brian Gapp is out of a coma and entered rehab this Tuesday.
“We are exhausted and we feel like expectant parents all at once,” said his mother Christina Gapp. “Each new ‘first’ feels like a milestone and they are happening lots faster than with a new baby. Brian’s last few days prove that the brain is powerful and self-healing. And the power of faith expressed through prayer, kind words of encouragement and blessings from our community just proves that healing comes from the outside equally strong.”
Dennis Gapp wrote a post on Brian’s CaringBridge website that reads like this:
“Brian continues his miraculous journey! Last night he pulled his feeding tube all the way out of his nose. His rehab assessment was very promising, and he was able to sit up in his chair and eat yogurt and drink apple juice. He enjoyed it a lot, and smiled at everybody around him. We were very happy because it means they do not have to put his feeding tube back in. His progress continues to amaze those around him, and everyone is falling in love with him. He is so cute and cooperative. He says ‘mom’ often, and other words and phrases that don’t always make sense but often make us laugh. He is staying awake longer and becoming more alert. He responds to commands, recognizes people and smiles more and more. When I got him up to put him in his wheelchair, he gave me a big hug. It was awesome!”
Brian Gapp was driving to post secondary classes in Inver Grove Heights and was traveling out of Hastings on 15th Street. That road eventually turns into 150th Street, and is gravel. He apparently lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a tree. He wasn’t found until about 90 to 120 minutes later.
The Gapp family has said the support from the community has been astonishing.
“I can’t write a journal entry without sounding like a broken record, but thank you all from the deepest places in our hearts!,” Brian Gapp wrote on CaringBridge. “We are happy to share this miracle with all of you, and we hope it deepens your faith in God as it has ours. His Love and Mercy are limitless, and why he chose Brian and our family for this profound event I can’t answer. I am humbled and grateful to tears!”
As Brian was woken from the coma, family members have been learning more about what senses are working well. Christina Gapp conducted a test Sunday that showed Brian’s sense of smell is working just fine.
“The highlight of my day occurred today after I made bacon,” she wrote on CaringBridge. “Brian loves bacon. Cub Foods had a sale on bacon a few weeks ago and I got some, thinking that Brian would eat a generous portion. He cannot eat right now, so I felt a little bit uncomfortable, but a nurse thought I should bring things for Brian to smell. Immediately after cooking it, I sealed the bacon in a container and zipped into his PICU room. He was awake with the respiratory therapist working on his improving lung function. After the session, I opened the delectable and aromatic bacon, and asked him if smelled good. He nodded a decent non-verbal “Yes.” Then I asked for a big smile for me and he did it. Everyone in the room was in tears.
A fund has been set up to benefit Brian. It can be found online at http://briangapp.chip in.com/. An account is also established at Affinity Plus Credit Union.