Monday, October 12, 2009

Phone call from Kay Wege (Monday morning)

The following is a transcription of a phone conversation I had with Kay Wege, Monday, Oct. 12, 10:30 AM:

When we finally got there he looked really tired but looked like Josh. His hair was a little longer and it was sticking up it’s a little long again. It was sticking straight up and hard as a rock. He (Josh) was joking and said “it’s about time you got here.” We did a lot of laughing and heard more of the bomb story.

Josh isn’t sure if [the bomb went off] directly under it or really close. He first said he was sure it blew up right under him, [but] we also found out he was sitting right over the gas tank. It was a 200 lb bomb, double what the normal bombs are. They were in a LAV (light armored vehicle) so it wasn’t a humvee, he probably wouldn’t be here if it were a humvee, since a LAV has better protection. [A] humvee [is] more like car/van. Also, the LAV blew 40 ft. in the air 50 ft. forward. (later Kay told me that she heard wrong: it flew 45m, 120 ft!) Pretty much smooshed. Nobody said it flipped or landed on its head. Josh said he remembers ka-boom and thinking, “oh crap, that was a bomb.” He remembers being in the air and going “oh crap, I have no feet.” He was probably knocked out when it landed.

The other two gentlemen that were behind him are here [at Bethesda Naval Hospital] too. One of them has his legs busted up. He was in a position where he could crawl out of the vehicle by grabbing whatever he could to get out of the way. He told the sergeant to throw his legs out the way cause she couldn’t move him herself. She said he knows they were leaning on his legs but he said get Wege out of there. The Sergeant got tourniquets on his legs right away and then pulled him out and got Josh out and got him help right away. We haven’t talked to those two yet, but we hope to talk to them soon.

As far as his other wounds, we were told he has a cracked vertebrate in his back; he doesn’t seem to know that. Nobody was that concerned about it, so we didn’t think we needed to tell him that. His head is fine. He’s thinking and talking. He’s just really tired. He was in a lot of pain. I think he wouldn’t tell us and he wouldn’t show it. He said yeah I got pain and he wouldn’t say it’s horrible. It’s tolerable. He was only using his morphine 8 times in 6 hours and the nurse told him he could use it six times in one hour. He seemed relieved to know that, because he can control it with a little clicker.

This morning [Monday, Oct. 12] Dave and I got there and he was going in for that flush again. He was very livid. He really looked like Josh this morning. He was awake at 3 because he couldn’t sleep. He was supposed to go in for the flush at 7 am but Dave and I got there at 9 and he was still there. As soon as we got there they came to get him, so we had to leave, but at least we said good morning. He was mad because he had to wait so long. Mad is a good mad though. Hopefully he’ll feel good in a couple of hours and we’ll go back and check it out.

We’re going to save the video for a little bit later until he gets stronger he’s still dealing with all of this. We told him Joe was going to stay another week longer and he kind of softly said “I don’t want to be here that long”. He didn’t say it real loud. We’re going to have a family meeting with the doctors tomorrow [Tuesday, Oct. 13] and so on and we basically get to decide where his care will be as a family, Josh included. We can move him closer to home but really Walter Reed [Army Medical Center] is number one, top-notch rehab facility and we want him there until he’s ready for outpatient. Then [sister] Jessie will be sure he gets closer to home and can work with him at Back in Action. She actually has worked with amputees for clinical before she got her doctorate. She’s had some help with that.

God is always in control and puts everything where it needs to be, always. It’s just so apparent in this case. I just said to Dave, “How can people not believe in God? How can you not see someone is controlling all of this?” He knew, it was like they were loading people in this car this patrol and it was by random and they needed one more in this car so “you go”, so Josh said, “Ok, that’s where they told me, that’s where I went.” So initially he wasn’t supposed to be in this car. Again it’s the hand of God guiding and directing all of this and good things are going to come out of this. He was talking about how he was a good dancer he was and how he’s got the moves. Joe stayed later then the rest of us and then called Mitchell and Nathan and talked to them.

The nurse said “He’s going to work with this. You guys are here and that’s going to make a big difference. and we’ll see improvement every day. Jessie already being a good little medical person and was asking questions that we didn’t know what to ask and scoping out his legs and observing what she could without looking under the sheet.

Dave and I are well. I slept well last night. We went for a walk this morning and there are little shops (similar to Bagelmeister, Subway, and Dunkin Donuts) connected to the hospital. Everything is within walking distance. Phenomenal accommodations here, a little kitchen if we need to buy groceries and eat in we can. Even a phenomenal cafeteria.

We got a discount for when we come back, should be about $80 for the room. We can fit about four people in a room so it’s alright. This time is free. We have the trust fund for us to use when we want to come back.

We’ll be home on Sunday the 18th. Joe is going to stay. He thinks he’s staying for 3 more weeks. The room is booked until the 10th of November. It’s the Naval Lodge. We couldn’t get into the Fischer house, which is ok. The Lodge is like a hotel. There’s not a ton of people, which is good. We’re meeting people all the time. We met people from St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin. All the lodging is provided for this time. We’re not sure about the next time. We may need to dig into the trust fund for when we come back.

They can bring him anything from home anything he wants. Don’t know the address yet, will get it to us as soon as they know.

We don’t need anything yet, just prayers that Josh keeps up with a good attitude.
Joe is jumping on beds, which is a good thing. Joe is Joe again! Jordan is doing fine, crabbing from hairspray from homecoming, but good. Jaime is reading Twilight and doesn’t say anything. Jessie and Jeff are doing well. They got a lot of support from the resort they were at. There was a Marine there who asked how Josh was doing. They made a new camaraderie of friends!

Josh is going to be ok. Family will be here for a long time, nephew will be here next weekend. Joe will be here for a while.

We love you all.

Kay Wege

Address where the Weges are staying:

Navy Lodge
National Naval Medical Center
8901 Wisconsin Ave. 
Bldg. 52
Bethesda, MD 20889-5000

Address to send Josh Wege cards, etc.

Bethesda Naval Hospital
℅ Lance Corporal Josh Wege
8901 Wisconsin Ave. 
Bldg. 10 Room E515
Wait till next week to send stuff.

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