Monday, June 6, 2011

Update: 10:45pm on 6/6

I have some exciting news, but first I want to thank everyone for sharing your positive images of Forrest healthy and home. We love hearing your dreams and warm thoughts of Forrest, especially when told in such vivid detail. Forrest must have picked up on all the good vibes, because he's made good strides the last few days. He's been much more responsive for the first time in weeks. He's definitely in there. He played thumb war with me, gave me an "ok" and a thumbs up when I asked. He's answering some questions by holding up one finger for "yes" and two fingers for "no." He sat up on his bedside today with Mom and I, even though it was tough, he fought through it.

But not only is he making some cognitive progress again, we also got the green light today and are transporting by medical jet to UVA hospital tomorrow. We will post an update tomorrow when he's settled in to his new accommodations.

It's great that he's leaving Shepherd Center, where he made such amazing progress the first time around, on a positive note. His therapists, doctors, day nurses, night nurses, and techs at Shepherd have kept not only a vigilant, but also a loving eye on him during the months he's been here. Their positive and "can do" attitude has been instrumental to his recovery and his spirit. Just as they adore Forrest, we've come to think of them as family. We're looking forward to and envisioning the day Forrest and Team 44 walks back through Shepherd's door to say hello.

We will also miss our new friends in Atlanta who've been so great to us the last few months. They've made us feel like family and have been there to welcome us into their homes and their lives, lend a hand, offer encouragement, and let us recharge over dinner and conversation.

Austin and Team 44

Sitting up


  1. What a wild ride for you guys! I am so happy to hear Forrest is doing so much better. I hope you keep the updates coming as he progresses once back in VA. I'm so glad you will be home back as a family again. I cannot imagine how hard this has been on all of you and I am sure it has been extremely hard on Kent having to be so far away. You all are amazing and I have such a good feeling that you have finally turned the corner and are on the home stretch. Great job Forrest and Team 44!

    Christie Jones

  2. Great news to go to sleep on! The prayers of thanksgiving will be going up as I drift off to sleep and will keep the prayers going up for a safe and uneventful flight tomorrow. Praise God! and hugs around!

    Tina Millikan

  3. YEAH! Congratulations Forrest and we are thrilled you are coming back to Virginia. Have a safe flight and we hope to see you soon.

    Love, the Brevnovs

  4. wonderful wonderful news :-)

  5. All right! Forrest is making his way home, one step at a time! Now the job will be fighting back the crowds who want to come visit and help.

    Abby Laughlin

  6. Thinking of you and welcoming you back home to Virginia!

  7. Wonderful news! I'm so thrilled for all of you to be moving back close to your home! Keep up the good work, be safe on your flight, and as the rest of you drive or fly to Virginia.

    Forrest, it's so good to see you sitting up on the side of your bed again!! I've always heard that you can't keep a good man down. Knowing you through these blogs has proven that over and over again!!

    God Be With You!

    Wilbur and Joyce Ellis

  8. I'll be praying your plane has angels under the wings! You are COMING HOME!

    I pray that this is the first step in a ordered series of many until Forrest is determining them for himself.

    Safe home and Godspeed.

    Our prayers follow you.
    Shannon, et al. XO

  9. PS - Love this photo.
    PPS - I agree with Abby...crowd control in the coming weeks! :)

  10. Hi Forrest and Team 44! Hope you drifted off off to sleep on the plane trip and had great dreams. Austin, I loved that picture helping him to sit up. Waiting for the trip report. Love you guys. God Bless as you settle in your new 'homes'. Granma Norma

  11. To all of Team 44
    Godspeed on your journey back home. Maybe we can turn the saying about and make it "Virginia is for healers"! Best wishes for a speedy, safe and uneventful trip
    Paula Horne

  12. Yes, yes, yes!!!!! So, so happy to hear this wonderful news!!!! Wow, Forrest, you are truly a hero! Gosh, what an inspiration you are! I think of you and your family every single day and when I read this blog, I am so blown away by you, your family and the incredible love and support that you have. You are clearly destined for greatness, in fact, you are already there. We cried when we received the beautiful and warm note from you and your team in yesterday's mail.
    Sending you, as always, our prayers and love,
    David and Naomi

  13. That's wonderful news!! Ava made a little card for you Forrest. If you don't get it at Shepherd Center before you leave...we will send another one!

    Have a safe trip!
    God bless!
    Kelly and Famiy

  14. yeayyyy!!!! Forrest!!! You are coming home to VIRGINIA!! That is good news.

    Hazel, James and Rebekah

  15. WAY TO GO!!!!! Being back in Virginia will uplift his spirits, and Austin's, Mum's and Dad's too!! You can take quick trips home to recharge! I am so excited for you all. I KNOW he is in there and I just have a really good feeling about this new journey. God Speed Forrest!!!! The vibes from your followers will engulf UVA...You are on your step at a time...With much love, Barbara Riddleberger and the gang from Rabbit Hill XXOO