After traumatic brain and skull injuries, a boy is recovering after days of fighting for his life.
On Aug. 4, 13-year-old Drew Pelkowski was involved in a terrible golf cart crash in Romeo with friends.
“It was the most horrific experience ever,” said his mother Lauri Pelkowski.
Lauri describes that day nearly three weeks ago, when she got a call from Drew’s friend. Drew had been thrown 20 feet, landing on his head.
“When he was in the ambulance on his way to the hospital, they had me sit in the front seat and I didn’t think he was going to make it to the hospital,” said Lauri.
Drew had fractured his skull in three places, and though he underwent surgeries at Beaumont Hopsital in Royal Oak, he remained in a coma, clinging to life for days.
Finally, one day, Drew awoke and started making tremendous progress.
“They were all telling us we didn’t think he was going to pull through. We didn’t think he was going to make it and that this is a miracle that this is happening,” said Laurie.
Drew’s parents told 7 Action News they had been praying around the clock for him to improve but they were astonished by how far he has come.
He can now talk, write, and understands a lot.
“He does not stop to astound me,” said Drew’s father David Pelkowski. “He is the strongest kid I know.”
Cards now fill Drew’s hospital wall with messages of encouragement from people the teen knows, and those he does not.
The family, from Romeo, is also overwhelmed by the support of their town.
“It’s been absolutely incredible, I’m going to cry, it’s been incredible,” said Lauri.
“As I saw the cards coming into the waiting room, it’s shocking I don’t know what to think of it,” said David. “Even my work called me at GM and said 'you are off this week. We don’t want to hear from you we don’t want to see you. Your family is first,' and then they sent a card the whole department signed it. I’ve been shocked there has been that much impact.”
The medical bills are piling on for the family.
Just to be airlifted alone will cost them $28,000 and doctors are advising that Drew begin all kinds therapy at home because he has Asperger’s Syndrome, and he would do better in a familiar place but that would be another hefty expense.
“We’ve just kind of put everything else on hold, any other bills that have come in for other things, I just said to my husband nothing is getting paid right now,” said Lauri.
But the Pelkowskis say though they are struggling to pay bills, Drew’s recovery so far is priceless.
“When we look at the degree of his injuries, I would say half of the people don’t even survive, so when you see how well drew is doing, it brings a smile to your face,” said Dr Richard Veyna of Beaumont Hospital.
If you are interested in helping the family visit GoFundMe.com/DrewStrong
A fundraiser will take place in September at Aubree’s in Shelby Township.