RUPERT, Idaho — Community members opened their hearts and their pocketbooks so injured firefighter Alan Brady could be transferred to a Denver hospital specializing in spinal cord injuries.
The family is continuing raise money to help cover his medical costs.
“When I heard he was going to be transferred, I cried my eyes out,” said Brady’s sister, Lisa Oveson, of South Jordan, Utah.
The family raised more than $83,000, enough to have Brady, 38, transferred last Wednesday to Craig Hospital. He was injured in an ATV crash May 17, near Jackpot, Nev.
“We hear and see everything that has been going on to raise money, and we just can’t believe it. He said he didn’t know so many people cared. He’s also been contacted by total strangers,” said Bayley Fuller, Brady’s girlfriend
The ATV crash killed Jay Paul Setser, 33, of Rupert. Also injured were Jed Elmer Dansie, 35, and Jerued Kris Uscola, 35, also of Rupert.
Brady works for the City of Rupert as streets supervisor and was the volunteer battalion chief for East End Fire Department.
The accident fractured six vertebrae in his spine and left him an incomplete quadriplegic.
Fuller and Brady’s daughter, Rashell Brady, were in Denver with him Monday.
Brady is the father of three children, two of whom lived with him prior to his accident.
Rashell has been instrumental in raising the needed money and insistent on getting her father the best available care.
“When he first arrived they immediately began doing testing,” said Fuller.
Although he can’t move his legs, Fuller said, tests have shown some flicker of response in his muscles when he’s asked to move them.
“He was really excited to get here,” said Rashell Brady. “They are putting him in the wheelchair every day.”
Oveson said the hospital put Brady in an electric wheelchair on his second day, and he manipulates the controls with his limited use of one hand.
“He took right to it, and they turned up the speed on it,” Oveson said.
Oveson said a customized wheelchair will cost $20,000 to $30,000, and his home will need modifications to allow him access.
The family has been staying at housing near the hospital that is wheelchair accessible. Fuller said she takes Brady out on passes to the apartment for meals and a change of scenery.
This Wednesday, Fuller said, they will put him on a bicycle that will deliver electrical shocks to his muscles to stimulate a response.
“We are very excited,” she said.
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