Ever since July 3, when Goddard senior Dominic Chavez was injured during football practice, all of Roswell and Chaves County have held the Chavez family in their prayers. People have scoured Facebook in hopes of good news concerning Dominic.
The Chavez family issued the following statement a couple of weeks ago, shortly after the injury occurred: “On the evening of July 3, our son, Dominic Chavez accidentally injured his neck during a drill at football practice. Dom broke C5 and there was a displacement of the C5/C6 vertebrae with spinal cord involvement. He had no feeling from his chest to his lower body and was unable to move his legs. …”
“We were flown to UMC El Paso, Texas, where they rushed him into emergency surgery to fix the vertebrae and relieve the compression on his spinal cord. The doctors said it went well.
“They got everything stabilized,” according to the family’s statement. An MRI “showed swelling of (Dominic’s) spinal cord,” they said. “We will have to wait until the swelling subsides before we will know more regarding his prognosis.”
Dominic’s father, Robert Chavez, provided another update on Saturday, a little more than two weeks after the injury.
“We are celebrating small successes this week,” Robert wrote. “Dom’s sensation in his feet and legs has improved day by day throughout the week. He is able to feel people pinching and applying pressure over his whole leg.”
A neurosurgeon, Robert said, cleared Dominic’s “c-spine precautions,” and this week they “started getting him up and letting him work with the physical therapist.”
“So far we have celebrated enormous victories of sitting up to the side of the bed and up in a special chair briefly,” Robert continued. “These episodes are both physically and mentally exhausting for him, but Dom pushes through. He’s so incredibly strong, and we are so proud of him. The physical therapy in addition to rehabbing his body will also help with his breathing, which he still has some struggle with.
“On Friday, we learned he had been accepted to Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colorado. It is a hospital that specializes in rehabilitation after spinal cord injuries. We have some details to work through, but should be headed there soon.
“Dom is so determined, even though we’ve been cautioned it will take a long time. I know he won’t quit working to get better. We appreciate all of the continued support and prayers, calls, messages, texts and cards. You all have continued to uplift our family during this time.
“Thank you from the Chavez family.”
Sports editor J.T. Keith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 304, or firstname.lastname@example.org.