When nineteen year old Kaigan’s motorcycle ride turned into a life-threatening accident, his parents rushed in the car to drive two hours away from home and sleep in the hospital parking garage, all to be as close as possible to their son.
After Kaigan was thrown 100 yards from the crash, his friend who was riding with him, called the Chief Deputy Coroner, who happened to be Kaigan’s mom.
“When we get to the scene, I’m thinking of a motorcycle wreck [and] I thought oh maybe he’s got some scratches or broken bones,” Rebecca, Kaigan’s mom, said. “When they came out of the ambulance bagging him, I lost my mind. I started praying over him, [that] God will pull us through whatever is coming our way, but when they took off with him in the helicopter, it was like my life was shattered. He’s my baby and he’s my heart, he’s my life.”
After a stressful two hour drive to Erlanger in Chattanooga, Kaigan’s parents waited restlessly at the hospital for their son to be released from the trauma unit. In an effort to be as close as possible to their son, all of Kaigan’s family stayed in the parking garage of the hospital the first two nights.
Thankfully, a room was provided for them, free of charge, across the street at the Chattanooga Ronald McDonald House. Kaigan’s family was able to cut that two hour drive to a walk across the street.
“It’s a loving and warm environment, so it’s almost like home. We have all the necessities we need here that we would have at home,” said Rebecca. “Everybody in this house has a child that’s in that hospital. Whether or not we know them, it’s good therapy to talk to them, its good therapy for them to talk to you.”
Now out of the hospital and on the road to recovery, Kaigan and his family travel frequently to Chattanooga for doctor’s appointments with friendly faces waiting for them for if they ever need a home-away-from-home again.
Because of those choosing to share-a-night with the families in need of the Ronald McDonald House, children like Kaigan are able to receive care from the hospital with their parents constantly by their side.