Brenda Jean

For: Brenda Harrington
Organizer: Ginny Larsen
Brenda Jean (Brenda Harrington)
of $10,000 goal.
Raised by 30 donors
35% Complete
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

Brenda was coming up the stairs in her home after grocery shopping and something happened and she fell backwards from about the ninth step and hit the concrete floor on the back of her head causing multiple spider fractures and well as massive bleeding and swelling to the left front side of her brain. She was in a coma up until just a few days ago when she had her "Awakening". Very long road of speech, physical and occupational therapy ahead. She hasn't coordinated eating yet and has a feed tube in her nose but that will soon have to be replaced with a tube directly into her stomach (Doctors are worried about infection). She can say words like "Yes and yep" but doesn't recognize anyone by name or face. Arm and leg movements are sporadic at best.--Update 3/2/2014, Brenda is in the Dupage Co. Conv. Center now and relearning skills and having therapy to regain cognitive abilities.  She was recently terminated from her job and lost all health insurance. The process of getting her on medicaid has begun. Because of all the medical needs for this family and the loss of income and insurance I am extending this fundraiser. Please pray for the continued tremendous burdens and needs to be met.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on April 10, 2014

Posted on April 10, 2014

I'm copying this from Caringbridge, an update posted from Mike...

I just wanted to bring everyone up to date as best I can on Brenda. Plus, I wanted to let all of you know where the funds that you have so generously donated have gone. If I repeat myself I ask for your forgiveness. I'm old and I'm allowed. :)  The Convalescent Center took Brenda off a floor where she was getting some therapy (Physical, Occupational and Speech) and after the powers that be came to the conclusion that "Brenda was showing no further progression" decided to move her to the Dementia floor where she gets very little physical therapy and that's it. I talked to her Doctor about that and the speech therapy department at the local hospital called and asked if I would like to bring Brenda over once a week (to start) for an hour of therapy. I jumped at that chance. That will start next Weds 4/16. Brenda and I have been walking a lot lately. We're not very fast but we're not in any race either. I put a gait belt on her and we hold hands and off we go. She is doing great here. Her balance is excellent but she tires easily. Just like the rest of us she has her good days and bad days. Her long and short term memory still need a lot of work. I have been told that this could take a considerable amount of time to recoup. I get to work with Brenda everyday with puzzles, memory games, problem solving games etc. Her math skills are excellent, btw.

I would like to give you an overview as to where your donations have gone:

1) Making the home more handicap able. This includes:
a. Adding an additional hand rail for the front steps.
b. Adding bath rails both in and out of the bath.
c. Adding a hand held shower
d. Adding a HD plastic transfer bench from the toilet to the tub
e. Adding a hand held kitchen faucet
f. Adding a 5' gate at the top of the steps
g. Purchasing a lock box for all of our prescriptions. 

We are not quite done yet but I am guessing we will be close to the $3,000.00 mark for the above items.

2. We also purchased the following items:
a. Walker ($85.00)
b. Gait Belts (2)  ($20.00)
c. Speech Therapy at the local hospital (Checking on cost)
d. Having to use the wheelchair van for trips (3 times @ $70.00 per)
e. Cobra Insurance @ $1151.50 per month

3. Medical bills:
a. Cobra doesn't cover everything and I have to pay anywhere from                                      $20.00 to $40.00 co-pay for every doctor visit.

4. Additional costs:
a. Best guess is that so far it's been at least $11,000.00 out of pocket.                                 This amount does not reflect the credit card balance that was just paid                              off.  (Thank you, Jesus)!

I just wanted to share with you other expenses we incur:
a. Our monthly expenses run anywhere from $1700.00 to $1900.00.                                     This does not include my prescriptions, car fuel & maintenance,                                       groceries etc.

Now, here's the good part. I want to share with you just how good God is. Remember that none of Brenda's Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid has started yet. We have been surviving on my Social Security of less that $1700.00 per month. I'm not complaining at all here. Quite the contrary. After almost 5 months, God has provided for all of our needs! (Jehovah Jirah in the Hebrew means My God who provides). Somehow things seem to get paid. Again let me say I am not complaining nor am I questioning it. I am working strictly on faith. I have laid this burden at the cross. God knows our needs before we even ask but I am sure He still wants us to ask. 

Any ways, I wanted to let you know how things are going and just how wonderful my God is. Thanks to all of you who remember us in your prayer life. I testify to that fact that indeed God has heard your (and my) prayers. May Yeshua Jesus be forever Honored and Glorified. 


Mike Harrington 

Posted on April 2, 2014

Posted on April 2, 2014

Good report today from Brenda's visit to Dr. Ross, (picture will be added to photo section)
From Mike:

I wanted to share this picture of Brenda with her sister Linda. This was taken yesterday at the Convalescent Center. I was blessed to not only have my sister in law visit but two wonderful sisters from Pike County, Il. Monica and Angie (nee Olson). I met with Linda, Monica and Angie early in the AM for breakfast. Had a good time just chatting. Then we picked Brenda up and went over for an appointment with the neurosurgeon Dr Ross and he was very pleased with how well Brenda is progressing. We didn't bring Brenda in her wheelchair but had her on her walker. After the office visit Dr Ross took Bren for a walk without her walker. Just had her walking and then handed her the walker and made her carry it. This is to help with posture. Brenda did very well. I've said it before and I'll say it again... Brenda is quite the trooper! Went back to the nursing home and took some pictures. It's becoming harder and harder to say goodbye. Brenda doesn't understand why I am leaving and not taking her with. She has told me to come back later and pick her up. This one really hurts... a lot! My prayer is that King Jesus will sustain her. Dr Ross seemed to think that probably/maybe in two months she might be able to come home. I have set up another appointment with him for the end of May. We will know more then.



Posted on March 16, 2014

Posted on March 16, 2014

From Mike:
Dear Friends,

I wanted to thank you all again and give you a great big brotherly

1. Carpentry & plumbing work around the home making it a little more handicapable. This includes a new bannister, kitchen faucet, bath and tub hand rails, hand held shower, had the shower grouted. Total so far $1,400. This is what I have planned: A gate of some sort at the top of the steps, a used wheelchair that will fit through our narrow doors, a walker, an alert devise of some sort that she wears around her neck in case Brenda does fall all she has to do is hit a button. Plus some other minor plumbing, carpentry and electrical issues that need to rectified. I do not have an estimate yet but should have by the end of the month. Also, I just purchased an adjustable toilet to tub bench/transfer seat. I got a real good deal on this from Amazon. Company was having a sale and I got it for about half off with free shipping. I also purchased two (2) gait belts. This is usually worn when she is walking just in case she starts to fall. Very handy item. 

2. Five trips to different doctors using the Nursing home wheelchair van @$70.00 per trip. Now I take her. So far, so good. Thank the Lord!

3. I was able to pay on and pay off a few doctor bills. That was such a blessing in itself to write those checks. :) 

4. Brenda and I (as reported before) are now having to use Cobra insurance and that alone was $1151.50 per month. 3/28 I will have to write another check. That will last for 18 months. I am really hoping Brenda's Medicaid kicks in soon. When that happens then it will be only me on Cobra. Hopefully for just a wee bit until I get my own Medicare sorted out. 

5. I know there has been other Misc things but that's all I can remember for the moment. Without your generosity and love for two total strangers we never would have been able to do this. I am forever grateful for all that you have done to help us keep our little boat afloat. I could say a Bajillion "Thank You's! but it doesn't even come close. I am forever in your debt. Thank you for sharing. Thank you for caring. 


Mike and Brenda Harrington
[email protected] 

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