Merry Christmas

26 Dec

Greetings from the Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff, Ariz. Joel and Erika are preparing to eat supper this Christmas Day with the countdown to their plane trip to Denver slowly ticking toward zero-hour. The Aerocare medical staff is expected to come to the hospital about 6 a.m. Tuesday, with an expected departure from Flagstaff about an hour later. Hope the mess from the latest Colorado blizzard won’t muck up the arrival to Craig Hospital again.

Christmas was different this year, but Bryan, Jessica and Jamysen and I were able to be with Joel, and we celebrated with a dinner from Chili’s in his room Christmas Eve. We opened presents and ate a small breakfast Christmas morning. Mom, who is awaiting Joel’s arrival in Denver, and Erika, who was with family in Phoenix, were the missing parts. But fortunately Erika and her family drove up from Phoenix and visited Joel in the hospital to open presents. So right now we are just waiting. Waiting to get the show on the road and for Joel to recover. Hope all is well with everyone and that all of your holiday celebrations were wonderful. Take care…

— Phill

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Phill, Joel, Bryan, Jessica and little Jamysen celebrating Christmas with Joel. Erika came up later in the day and Mom is waiting for Joel’s arrival into Denver.


Joel and Erika in his hospital room celebrating Christmas at the Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff, Ariz.


Erika and her family with Joel in his hospital room.


Joel coming down a long incline in his wheelchair after pushing it up five times.


Joel riding his wheelchair in a hospital walkway over a Flagstaff street.


Posted by on December 26, 2006 in Previous Posts


9 responses to “Merry Christmas

  1. Matthew Powell

    December 26, 2006 at 1:50 am

    Merry Christmas to you, Erika and your families. It is wonderful seeing the updates and your progress on this site, thank you to everyone who works hard to keep it up.
    Joel, its awesome seeing your progress, everyday I check the site and your attitude and abilties seem to improve. I know your mental strength will be instrumental in getting your physical strength back, and you are well on the road to recovery in both departments it seems. I hope your trip to CO goes very well. Amy and I are both looking forward to being able to see ya and you are always in our prayers.

    Matthew and Amy.

  2. Will Gilman

    December 26, 2006 at 4:36 am

    First of all, merry Christmas to you and all the families. It’s great to see pictures of you, you seem to be doing incredibly well. I’ve been watching the blog closely and every update is an improvement. Like Jan said we’ve all been thinking of you here and I ain’t much of a prayin’ man, but I was praying those first few nights. I’m glad to see you’re doing so well and I know you’ll make it out in the best way possible, not to mention with style. I look at the progress you’ve made and I think of what people say to me when they think they’re being clever: “Where there’s a Will there’s a way”. You’ve got the will down pat, keep up the spirits and know that we’re all rooting for you buddy,

  3. Loren and Susan Melvin

    December 26, 2006 at 2:48 pm

    Dear Joel,

    We liked seeing the pictures of you with family and friends.

    It is clear and cold today. We read about you and your

    progress daily. I’m sure the Crestview Queens will be

    visiting you. Love, Love, Susan and Loren

  4. John and Juli Begley

    December 26, 2006 at 3:45 pm

    Dear Joel and Erika,
    Merry Christmas to you and well wishes to you as you begin a new year and a new journey. Hugs and Best wishes to you and all.
    John and Juli

    PS. Give precious little Jamysen a big hug for Christmas from all of us here in Texas.

  5. Beth

    December 26, 2006 at 4:37 pm

    Hi Joel,
    And welcome back to Colorado!! Santa cleared the way the other night, so you guys should make it in no problem. It sounds like you’re in for a long day with all this traveling. Let us know when you’re all situated and ready for some visitors.
    See you soon!

  6. Holly Bob, Andy, Liz

    December 26, 2006 at 5:20 pm

    Joel and Erika,
    Today your journey begins! Best Wishes and all our love. We are off to Tucson to see Bobs mom until the 30th. Hopefully we will be seeing you before the New Year. Be good and do what your told.
    Bob & Holly

  7. Jean Lammers

    December 26, 2006 at 11:55 pm

    Hi Joel ! You’re in Colorado now ! Christmas is finally over! but a most superb gift for all of us around here this year has been hearing about your impressive improvement day by day !! Very encouraging then to think of where you will be even a week from now given your strength and resolve. We will continue to pray for a fast track to complete recovery. We’re thinking of you often. Here’s to hangin’ in there —and being that it’s you, I imagine you’ll be having a few laughs along the way ! Love you -and with our prayers!
    Jerry and Jean

  8. Jennifer, Steven & Christopher Bishop

    December 27, 2006 at 12:43 am

    Merry Christmas!!! I was so great to see pictures! You are amazing and we pray everyday for miracles. Hopefully your journey back to Denver was a smooth one (as smooth as possible) Can’t wait to see you, Erika and all the family. I will be happy to sign up for “Joel’s Rehab Team” once I here that you have made it and things are a bit settled.
    All our love and support!!
    The Bishop’s

  9. Peter Scanlon

    December 27, 2006 at 1:08 am


    Merry Christmas, buddy!

    Hope you get over to CO and start rehabbing very soon. Looking forward to seeing you guys when we get back.

    Pics are great, but you need a haircut – you look like some damn hippie protester.



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