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Goddard’s Dominic Chavez continues to improve after spinal injury

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The family of Goddard senior football player Dominic Chavez wishes to thank all of Roswell for their prayers and support. (Angela Greene File Photo)

There is light at the end of the tunnel for Goddard’s Dominic Chavez. Dominic continues to get better and his family received their first update on Friday.

The family had their first conference with the doctor, physical and occupational therapist, registered nurse, case manager, teacher and therapeutic recreation therapist.

Dominic’s dad, Robert Chavez, said this was the first conference to “give us information on his injury, talk about goals and establish his starting point baseline.”

“Dominic has an incomplete C6 spinal cord injury,” Robert Chavez said. “… The recovery for spinal cord injury is long, typically six months to two years.

“They anticipate our inpatient stay to be three months. During that time, Dom will continue to work to become stronger, he and I will both work on learning skills and techniques for home to allow him to live a life as normal and independent as possible while we continue to see how far he can go in rehab.”

Robert Chavez continued: “They are very open here at Craig Hospital (Englewood, Colorado) … with the knowledge that they cannot predict where he (Dominic) will end up. The occupational and physical therapist have been very impressed with Dom’s drive, strength, determination and progress so far. Dom will start his senior year here at Craig, so he will graduate on time.

“Because of his previous hard work, he only needs one year of English and a semester of government and economics to graduate.”

For readers who are not familiar with the Dominic Chavez story, on July 3, Dominic injured his neck during a football drill at practice.

“Dominic broke his C5 and there was a displacement of the C5/C6 vertebrae with spinal cord involvement,” according to a statement provided by his family at the time. “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,” the statement continued. An MRI “showed swelling of (Dominic’s) spinal cord.”

Robert Chavez has continued to provide updates on Dominic’s condition in the weeks since.