Travis’ Progress

By Deepali Ramaiah & Janani Balu

Travis & Jen during the Module Abroad in Peru earlier this year
Photo courtesy: Travis Richardson

“The most important thing about recovery is to pass the message on” – Maurice Gibb. It has been little over a month now since Travis Richardson, our fellow T-bird & friend, suffered an immense injury during a Rugby Tournament in Flagstaff. Below is a look at his progress thus far:

Much of Travis’s rapid progress began in the 2nd and 3rd weeks of October, with him being more stable and working hard with physical, speech, and occupational therapists to retrain him for daily tasks such as communicating and eating. His speech, as well as movement in his right side, started to return, slowly and his ability to communicate has improved dramatically. From conversations with friends and family, some short and long term memory loss did become apparent but has improved day by day. During the 3rd week of October, Travis was moved from the hospital in Flagstaff to a rehabilitation center in Phoenix to continue the healing process.

On November 8th, Travis was discharged from the inpatient rehabilitation facility and beginning next week, he will enter an outpatient program in downtown Phoenix to continue intense speech and physical therapies for about four weeks. Having been a part of Global Sounds, music has also played a significant role during his recovery. It is a testament to how rapid his recovery has been and to Travis’ efforts to improve, that just after two weeks in the inpatient center, he was ready to begin his outpatient therapies.

Travis’ recovery has been tremendous, but there is much on the horizon along the road to recovery. He is walking and his speech is improving each day while his memory continues to advance by leaps and bounds. It is amazing to think of how far he has come from such a serious accident that occurred just over a month ago. While it is too early to tell when Travis will return to studying at Thunderbird, he did make a small ‘comeback’ of sorts by returning to campus yesterday to support his Rugby team mates at the Thunderbird Rugby Invitational Tournament.

No less amazing have been his family, girlfriend (T-bird Jen Noymer) and numerous friends from near and far who have been consistently helping him in to bring back his memories and mobility. Messages, photos and care packages sent from his Thunderbird friends have been extremely helpful in his journey thus far. Friends who have been visiting him recently say that Travis has been talking and joking with his visitors and still has the same personality as he always has had: cracking jokes and laughing at ridiculous things. While most of us would really like to visit him at this time, too many, too soon would clearly be overwhelming for Travis. Those wishing to visit Travis are requested to reach out to Jen.

We, at Das Tor, on behalf of the entire student community, wish Travis the very best and hope he has a rapid and robust recovery!

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