Thursday, June 18, 2009


Over the years I have witnessed others experience the worst day of their lives. I always wondered how that would feel, now I know. This is something I wish to have never known. June 17, 2009 - the most heart wrenching, excruciating, experience for our family to date.

For all who are not sure what happened, or are getting little bits and pieces of this terrible story.... let me try and tell you what I know. My mom was aching to see Aviana for the day. She called early to ask if she could come pick her up. Shortly after, Aviana was bouncing out the front door all the while looking back saying "I love you Mommy."

One of Aviana's favorite places to be in the world is with her Nana and Papa, they are truly three peas in a pod. They were out shopping for the day, which was one of their favorite things to do. They loved to show her off to anyone, and everyone who looked her way.

Our beautiful Aviana and her Nana and Papa were crossing the street in Roseville, Gary was holding her as he so often loved to do. Gary and Aviana were struck by an oncoming car. Gary rolled onto the hood of the car and broke the windshield. Aviana was thrown out of his arms and landed on her head. Unfortunately, my mom was just a few steps behind and witnessed the entire horrific incident :(

Aviana was not stable enough to be airlifted, and for that reason they were sent by ambulance to the closest hospital, Sutter Roseville. Gary sustained a black eye, 4 broken ribs, a huge gash on the back of his head, a fractured pelvis and many other cuts and scrapes.

The doctor came and let us know that Aviana was not expected to make it, she had severe head trauma. Everything was in slow motion. I could hear the words, but could not make any sort of sense of them.

They finally offered an option of a last ditch effort, which they said was a LONG shot, and we took it. Keep in mind, Dave was working in Truckee that day and trying to get back. He was forced to make these life or death decisions by phone while on his way. The doctor said they do not deal with children at this particular hospital, but have no choice. They said they needed an answer immediately as they have to work fast! The doctor also said she needed to be airlifted to UC Davis, but could not because she wasn't stable enough. We gave them the go ahead and they were gone.

I was terrified to see her. If she didn't make it, I honestly was torn with my last memory being of her just a few hours prior. Her smiling face, her waving to me, telling me she loved me. My mom urged me to. She needed me. My mom was right. Moms always are. Seeing her in those moments before they wheeled her back were some of the worst times for us. Her tiny, little larger than life body, lifeless. It was something so awful. Words can't accurately describe that feeling.

They took her into an emergency surgery and removed part of her skull to let her brain expand. Once that surgery was over, her pupil responded the way they were hoping for. Shortly after the initial surgery they discovered the other side of her head needed the same, and she was again rushed back in. They did the exact same procedure on the other side. They had the same good result from her pupil. Apparently, when she arrived both of her beautiful pupils were what they called "blown out."

We then had to wait until she was stable. At that time, she was air lifted to UC Davis Medical Center. She has been in an induced coma since the accident.  Their plan is to hopefully let her come out on Saturday.

At this point, we have no idea what the extent of brain damage is. They said they have seen kids get up and walk out, and they have seen kids that cannot eat or breath. We have no idea where she will fall on the spectrum.

Please pray for our little angel and keep us in your thoughts : )


  1. Jen and Dave: I know that there are no words that will make the hurt go away and this nightmare end. I love you both. My heart aches for you both, for Aviana, and for your Mom and Gary. My love and prayers are constant for you and your family. I am here for you for WHATEVER you need.

    Just as your Mom and Gary are strong and always come out on top, so do you.

    I'm sure I speak for all who will read your blog when I say thank you for creating this blog to get us all on the same page and to keep us posted with Aviana's progress and with the rest of the family's progress. I know it's hard for you to revisit such a traumatic event.

    Avi: I love you. And I'm so glad that LAMBY is by your side to comfort you during your journey back to us. You are strong. I know I will see your smiling face again soon.

  2. Jen and Dave and Little Avi,
    Thank you for keeping us in the loop. My family is praying for each of you. I can not sleep thinking of sweet Aviana. You are all in our prayers and will continue to be. I am so happy to hear that Avi has her lamby. We love you and will be here for all of you whatever you may need.

  3. Brenda's extended family and friends at Chevron are praying for Avi. You are all in our thoughts and prayers.

  4. Jen, dave and Avi-
    Jen I haven't had the pleasure of meeting Little Avi, but I will one day, as I know everything will work out. You are all in my prayers, as well as my familes. I have two girl's and I just imagine what you are going through, and am saddened. I look forward to reading your blog, as I know the outcome will be fantastic.
    In our prayers

    Suzie ziswasser

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  6. Jen and Dave:

    Jeff and Buffy gave us the link to this blog for your daughter. Just wanted to let you know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I am the father of three young kids and can only imagine the emotions you are going through. Avi sounds like and strong little girl who will be doing everything she can to pull through this and be with you again. Hang in there and be assured that you are in many peoples prayers.

    Greg Ryder

  7. I don't believe I have actually met you, but my daughter Emma was in Aviana's preschool class. Her grandma, Debby, teaches the classes at Mahany Park. I'd stay sometimes to help out. Aviana used to grab my pantleg, motion for me to bend down, and would curl up into my arms. She wanted to be held up by one of us when she was doing playdough or crafts. What a little angel. I'm so, so sorry to hear about the accident. I will keep you all in my prayers and thoughts. God bless.

    -Jillian Jordan

  8. It is 4:41AM. This is the first time that I have gotten on the blog. My friends, family, and I are praying. (My husband, Ray, went to Russia with your Mom with a team of others when the wall first came down.) God will give you the grace and the strength every minute, every day. I know, I've depended upon Him sooo much. He is faithful.
    ~Deborah Cooper, Kentucky friend

  9. My heart and prayers are with you and your family! I just heard about Avaianna through Vanessa's Blog. I am sooo soo sorry. I hope she is home real soon! Thanks for keeping us updated.


  10. I'll pray for Aviana. It sounds like a nightmare. :(

  11. I'm keeping Aviana in my thoughts & I am going to ask my grandmother's church to pray for her as well. I'm so sorry that you are going through this.

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