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 (Dec 2009). 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.
Caleb also goes by Cale. He was a Sergeant in the Army. His job and all of his training was for Intelligence Analyst, and he had plans of working in a government agency, like: FBI or CIA. He loved his job when he actually was able to do it, which would be while deployed, and always said that he would love the Army if he was single.
He LOVES junk food! Pizza, Chicken Nuggets, chips, candy, pie, soda, cookies, chocolate, hamburgers, and the list could keep going! Anything healthy is extremely hard to get past him.
Sports are definitely a huge interest! He doesn’t follow most sports other than hockey, but he always loves playing any of them or watching any of them live! If he needed to exercise, and it was on his own rather than PT (with the Army), he would never choose to lift weights and be in a gym. He would always rather play a sport!
He LOVES the beach and mountains! They’re always full of adventures and are usually where we would look to go on trips. A day at home just chillin’, Cale either wanted to play board/card games or video games, but would never choose to watch a movie or TV (unless hockey was on of course!).
Things have changed a lot, but playing games and being with friends are still what he loves and are two things that are still so important to him!
More of what Cale loves: Steak, Snowboarding, God, Mt. Dew, Pepperoni and Pineapple pizza, Detroit Red Wings, junk food (this cannot be said too many times!), his Girl, sleep, fruit, music, dogs and animals, Crazy 8’s, being outside, sports, adventures, shooting stuff (uh…), family, games, laughing, and being home (in Kennewick).
Kathleen also goes by Leena . Her dream job is to be the best wife and mother that she could be. She has her AA in Early Childhood Education and has been on several mission trips around the world. Odd jobs were getting her through school and deployments, but the plan was always to stay home when we started our family!
She LOVES food! Healthy and junk alike! She loves cooking, baking, and trying new recipes. Not everything turns out, but it’s still such a blast to try. Unlike Cale, Kathleen loves eating healthy along with desserts to enjoy. Vegetables and fresh fruit are what get her excited, but the comfort food, pasta/bread are always welcomed!
Sports…nope. There has always been the wish, and maybe with enough push from friends it will eventually come, but there just hasn’t been the sport ability in her-ever. From Cale’s love for hockey, it has birthed in her a love for hockey too! Just watching though! ;) Running is enjoyed, but only when there is a friend to run with! She also loves to work out, but again with a friend!
Along with her husband, the beach and mountains are both desires to create new adventures! Traveling all over and seeing the world is part of both of their plans for the future. If it’s a day chilling at home, she would either be playing cards/board games, curled up watching a movie (even if she has already seen it a 100 times), or making a yummy dessert!
We love God first.
We love each other.
We love our family.
We love the idea of having babies…
We love our friends (even the ones of you we’ve never met!)
We love food.
We love traveling
We love animals-especially dogs.
We love how God has daily saturated us with His grace, peace, comfort, strength, wisdom, joy, love, and so much more. We are so truly blessed by the love story that He has given us with each other and the love story we both have with Him. So, intimate and wrapped so beautifully with the finger prints of Jesus.
We love that you are sharing in our journey through life. We treasure you dear friend as you read these words; the words from our hearts on this blog, and for your prayers; such sweet words spoken between you and the Lord about us. Thank you.