2016 Featured Story - Jackie Blake
One word…TERRIFYING. That is how Ross Blake describes the events on July 20th, 2009. He, along with his wife Jackie and their young daughter Madelyn, had just embarked on a road trip to see his sister in Eastern Iowa when Jackie started to complain that she could not see while driving. After guiding Jackie to gently press the brakes while he steered the car onto the side of the road for her, Ross called 9-1-1.
Jackie was transported to a local hospital via ambulance where her symptoms worsened. She began vomiting and had difficulty speaking. Doctors performed a CT scan that came back clear, and Jackie was diagnosed with a migraine and sent home to rest. But shortly after leaving the hospital Ross saw that his wife’s eyes were pointing in two different directions. One aimed at him, and one looking down to the center console in the car. They headed back to the hospital where it was determined that Jackie needed to be transported to Des Moines for further evaluation. They would soon discover that Jackie was having a stroke, and that she needed emergency surgery to dissolve the clot in her brain.
“There is a 30% chance that your wife will survive surgery. If she does, she will likely be in a nursing home.” As Ross heard those words and sent Jackie into surgery, he thought about the possibility of losing his wife and raising their daughter alone…
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