Elk River, MN

The Gilliland Family

Michael Gilliland
Back Injury

On July 7th, Michael was trimming a tree in his backyard. He was standing on a ladder using a chainsaw to cut a branch that didn't cut all the way through. He heard the branch cracking, but could not get away in time. It fell on his head, knocking him to the ground and out cold. Michael's wife, Jen, and their three children were watching the whole thing happen. Jen was able to call 9-1-1 right away, and Michael was life-flighted to Hennepin Healthcare downtown Minneapolis from his home in Elk River. He spent 3 weeks in the ICU with his family waiting earnestly by his side. After many intensive weeks of being poked and prodded by nurses and surgeons, it was discovered that 29 year old Michael had a complete T-6 spinal cord injury, leaving him paralyzed from the belly-button down. Michael has spent nearly a month as an inpatient at a rehabilitation unit connected to HCMC. He will soon be transitioning to Courage Kenny to continue his rehabilitation. As medicine stands, Michael will not likely ever walk again, but he is working hard to strengthen his upper body so as to be able to move around in his wheelchair. At this point Michael's family is making the 45 minute drive back and forth to visit him whenever possible. He is unable to work, and his wife has run out of paid time off many weeks ago. Michael and his family need our help to make ends meet. They have their usual mortgage payments due,  but are now facing crippling hospital bills as well as the cost of adapting their home/cars/etc. to be wheelchair accessible. Thank you for your time!

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