One of the few struggles Amanda and Daryl Koch have these days is trying to raise two teenage boys who think they know everything. Back in the winter of 2008, that was the furthest thing from their minds.
Many people remember the Koch family’s story. Almost nine years ago, all four required emergency hospital care after they were involved in a head-on collision. Before that day, they had only ever needed the Regina General Hospital (RGH) for the birth of their sons. But after the accident, there was a family member on every floor.
Amanda still marvels at how far her family has come since then.
We are a living, breathing example of how Hospitals of Regina Foundation’s (HRF) donors help save lives,” she says. “I nearly lost my oldest child. My husband suffered severe trauma to his lower extremities. My youngest son experienced a serious spinal column injury. To have them recover, to the best of their abilities, is amazing and speaks to the quality health-care services available in our community.
Trauma cases impact all services in Regina’s hospitals, including emergency departments, surgical, intensive care and medicine units. In 2016 alone, the Regina General Hospital and Pasqua Hospital saw 1,547 serious trauma care cases. Your support helps our hospitals provide life-saving care to people like the Koch family in their time of need.
Today, they have begun a new chapter of their lives, one filled with promise and a renewed sense of normalcy. Thanks to the exceptional care they have and continue to receive at Regina’s hospitals, their journey has been nothing short of inspirational.
Amanda’s shattered arm has healed. Daryl is on the mend after spending months at RGH and the Wascana Rehabilitation Centre recovering from multiple surgeries on his left hip and legs.
Carter, now in Grade 9, recuperated well and remains an active, sports-loving teenager. His older brother, Dawson, has had two major surgeries since 2013 to reconstruct his spine and pelvis. He meets regularly with doctors to monitor his progress. The resilient 17 year old has not slowed down and is driven by his goal of one day competing as a member of the Canadian Paralympic Team in sledge hockey.
“We are healthy, happy and extremely grateful,” she says. “One of the underlying themes has been how we could never have done it alone. There were so many people – doctors, surgeons, specialists and nurses – who played an important role in our survival and recovery.”
Having spent considerable time at our hospitals over the past nine years, Dawson agrees that he and his family have been blessed with amazing care.
In 2017, I will have spent more time in a wheelchair than on my own two feet,” says Dawson. “I can’t say enough about how my doctors continue to help me with the transition. To this day, they make me feel safe and they have a positive outlook when it comes to my recovery. My family and I are fortunate to have such amazing, caring people in our lives.
Dr. Alan Beggs, Orthopedic Spine Surgeon, Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region, says he and his colleagues are able to provide patients with quality care thanks to the support of the Foundation and its donors.
“The Koch family, and Dawson in particular, serves as an example of how life can change in the blink of an eye. On average our hospitals see four trauma cases per day. It is only through the generosity of the community and its commitment to our hospitals that we have the tools to provide world-class care,” says Dr. Beggs. “That support enabled us to save their lives and to provide exceptional rehabilitation services to the point where the family is beyond the healing stage and is now able to return to the exciting lives that lay before them.”
It is that same optimism that leaves Amanda excited about the future and deeply appreciative of how HRF’s donors have given her family a new lease on life.
Every second of every day, we are thankful for your investment in our family. We are here today because of you,” she says. “Our story is one of many that happen every day in our community. There will be other families who will require hospital care and who will need to rely on our health care services. The impact you have is tremendous.
“The Koch family’s trials are an example of how an accident and resulting trauma can change lives,” says president and CEO Dino Sophocleous. “Ensuring we have the right equipment and technology in place ensures that patients like them receive the care they deserve.”