Prayers for Ash­lyn

Genola com­mu­nity ral­lies around in­jured snow­boarder

Serve Daily - - FRONT PAGE - By Me­gan Wall­gren for Serve Daily

— In a snow­board­ing acci- dent on March 1, Genola res­i­dent Ash­lyn Ewell suf­fered a trau­matic brain in­jury. Af­ter re­ceiv­ing first-aid from the ski pa- trol, she was life-flighted to Utah Val­ley Univer­sity to re­ceive emer­gency sur- gery to re­lieve pres­sure on her brain. She would stay in the ICU for 23 more days, cel­e­brat­ing her 19th birth­day there.

Since the ac­ci­dent, the com­mu­nity has come to­gether to support Ash­lyn and her fam­ily in amaz­ing ways. Her fa­ther, Tra- vis Ewell said, "It’s been re­ally un­be­liev- able. We've been blown away."

A few days af­ter Ash­lyn's ac­ci­dent, fam­ily friends got to­gether and de­cid- ed they wanted to do some­thing. They put to­gether a fundrais­ing event called Prayers for Ash­lyn. "It just ex­ploded," said Ewell. "It was amaz­ing what they were able to do."

On March 17, com­mu­nity mem­bers gath­ered at Genola Park for the fundrais- er to help pay for Ash­lyn's med­i­cal bills and her con­tin­ued re­cov­ery. An es­ti­mat- ed crowd of over 500 peo­ple par­tic­i­pated in a va­ri­ety of events in­clud­ing a din­ner, live auc­tion, bon­fire and pony rides, lep- rechaun cos­tume con­test and more.

Though not in at­ten­dance, Ash­lyn's fam­ily was over­whelmed by the com- mu­nity support. "The amount of things do­nated was ab­so­lutely in­cred­i­ble," said Ewell. "We were amazed by the busi­ness- es that stepped for­ward and strangers that we don't even know that do­nated things. They sold every­thing. We are very hum- bled by the whole thing."

On March 23, Ash­lyn was moved out of the ICU to an acute care re­cov­ery fa­cil­ity, the Utah Val­ley Spe­cialty Hospital. There she be­gan the long road to re­cov­ery with oc­cu­pa­tional ther­apy, speech ther­apy. Af- ter some time there, she will be moved to an in­pa­tient re­hab cen­ter un­til she is phys­i­cally able and ready to go home.

Ash­lyn was pre­par­ing to serve an LDS church mission in Dal­las, Texas, and was sup­posed to en­ter the mis­sion­ary train­ing cen­ter on April 11. For now, those plans are on hold.

Ewell said the doc­tors have told them, “You’ve got to re­mem­ber this is a mara- thon and not a sprint.”

“She’s ba­si­cally hav­ing to re­learn ev- ery­thing.” Ewell said, “We’ve seen some cool mir­a­cles and signs so far and hope she will be able to re­cover.”

The com­mu­nity is con­tin­u­ing to pro- vide support to the Ewell fam­ily. On May 5, Ash­lyn and her fam­ily will re­ceive a gen­er­ous por­tion of all pro­ceeds made at the Daley Freez in Payson. If you go, make sure to men­tion that you are there for Ash­lyn for your pur­chase to count to- wards the ben­e­fit.

Ewell wants the com­mu­nity to know how grate­ful the fam­ily is for the sup- port they’ve re­ceived and how it will help them. “It will be huge. They re­ally don’t re­al­ize how much they did for us,” he said.

“Ash­lyn was al­ways some­body who wanted to make a dif­fer­ence in this world. That’s why she was serv­ing a mission. That’s why she was work­ing at an as­sist- ed liv­ing cen­ter. She al­ways wanted to make a dif­fer­ence and I can’t tell you the dif­fer­ence our com­mu­nity has made in help­ing Ash­lyn,” said Ewell.

To find out more about events to help Ash­lyn, visit the Prayers for Ash­lyn Ewell Face­book page.

Ash­lyn EwellPray­ers

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