We had the pleasure of meeting the Glad family in June of this year after being contacted by Neil, a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army National Guard, while he was stationed in Azerbaijan. He and his wife of 18 years, Mary, are parents to 7 children, Tiffany, James, Kenneth, Michael, Anna, Matthew, and Joshua.
Neil enjoys reading the local news while stationed overseas and while reading the Deseret News he was moved by an article written about the Kyle Korver Foundation (Seer Group) and the services we are providing the families in the Salt Lake valley. He then contacted us without his wife’s knowledge asking for any kind of help we could provide. There was no way to get Matthew in and out of the house without Mary carrying him. With a recurring back injury it was difficult if not impossible to do without assistance. Mary received a quote of $4900 to build a ramp for the house, but with all of the repairs needed on the home it was going to have to be added to the list of things that would come with time.
But lets back up a bit, back to when Matthew was born.
When Mary was pregnant with Matthew everything was normal until about a 7 days prior to his due date when she could no longer feel him moving. She went to the doctor and everything seemed normal, they could hear a heartbeat although the ultrasounds couldn’t see his head because of where he was positioned, it was normal. The doctor decided to induce Mary just to be safe. When he was born he was kicking and screaming like a normal baby. Two days following his birth the nurse noticed that his head was swelling. They performed a cat scan and the doctor could only see blood on the scan. They immediately sent him to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City to drain the blood from is brain. It took 6 weeks to drain all of it. The doctors informed Neil and Mary that his life expectancy would only be five years, he would be in a permanent vegetative state and he would be sick all of the time. That was thirteen years ago.
Today Matthew is a lovable young man is surrounded by a wonderful family that celebrates his daily progress. He almost never gets sick and gets around with the use of a wheel chair. Although he not able to communicate verbally, his mom knows when he is happy, when he is sad, when he is in pain and when he is feeling joy. He is not able to move most of his body, but he does have full use of his left hand, which his mom says is “really strong.”
The family had purchased their current home, which has been in the family for generations, in 2008 to ensure their parents would not lose it due to financial difficulty. The house, originally built in the late 1800s, was in need of a lot of work. A ramp being one of the most important!
Such a small thing as a ramp has been a huge blessing to the family. Matthew loves to be with his family and while everyone else was out playing he was not able to spend time with them. Now his mom can bring him outside where his brothers and sisters play with him and tease him and he gets to spend precious time with them. It is through your support, anyone reading this, and through the purchases of Seer Clothing, that we are able to be apart of the lives of great families like the Glad’s, one that are gracious, loving, and generous; a true family. Neil has served in the military for many years now and people would think of him as their hero. He, however, would tell you that Matthew is his hero.