Caleb Michael Darling is a Sergent in the US Army, just finished up his two tours in Afghanistan and got back state side about a month and a half ago. He built up enough leave time to take the last three months until his discharge and go on a trip across country to visit friends and family. Him and his wife Kathleen had left their first stop in Virginia and were heading down to Beulaville, NC to visit Kathleen's brother.
They met up with her brother about 10 minutes from his house to follow him in. They were following behind her brother, when about 200 yards from her brothers house a car pulled out in front of Cale who swerved to miss him. They missed the car but over corrected, going off the road and hitting a tree about 20 feet away. The car hit the tree on the driver side door. It collapsed the door and roof around him pinning him against the steering wheel. Her brother saw all this in his rear view mirror and was the first to the car. Another member of the military stopped and together, he and her brother got Kathleen's door open. A nurse that was late for work drove up to the accident and was able to help keep Cale alive until paramedics arrived. Firefighters had to cut the roof of the car off to get him out. Kathleen was sent to one hospital for her injuries while Cale was airlifted to Pitt County Memorial Hospital, which is the best trauma hospital around.
When Cale arrived, Doctors didn't think he was going to pull through. They had a Chaplin and social worker come, but he was still showing that he had fight left in him. The Neurosurgeon decided to perform a surgery, removing a piece of his skull to decrease the pressure as his brain swelled. The Neurosurgeon said that most people in as serious condition as Cale die en route or on the operating table, but Cale pulled through it.
He has a broken femur, facial fractures, hip fractures, clavicle fracture, a severely damaged optical nerve, collapsed lung, cerebral spinal fluid leaking out of his ear due to possible brain damage.
Kathleen's OK, she had just a few staples in her head. At first they wouldn't tell her where Cale was but they transferred her from the hospital she was at up to Pitt. There she was able to make a deal with the doctor to discharge her as long as she stayed around the hospital which wasn't an issue considering she wouldn't leave his bedside.
Please be praying for both of them. We are in the process of setting up an account for donations to help with the expenses while everything settles. Luckily Cale is still property of the US Army and is insured by them so they are taking care of all the medical bills. The address of the hospital is posted on the top right of the blog if you would like to send gifts and flowers.
Kathleen is with friends and family here, and will be until Cale wakes up and they are sent home.