GNCC XC2 champion suffers broken vertebra
Reigning XC2 ATV GNCC Champion Josh Kirkland suffered a terrible crash a week ago Friday breaking a vertebra in his neck.
Kirkland was practicing for the upcoming Pont de Vaux ATV race held in France. While practicing he suffered a horrendous crash that sent him over the bars. An ambulance was sent immediately at which point it was determined to life flight him via helicopter to the nearest trauma center.
Upon admittance to the hospital, Kirkland immediately underwent surgery through the back of his neck to help stabilize the vertebrae in his neck. It was determined that his C5 vertebra was shattered and his spinal cord received trauma but was not severed. Another surgery was performed on Wednesday to aid in the stabilization of the neck. . A small hole in his intestine was also found this past Friday which caused infection and a high fever led to a third surgery. His family and friends have been by his side since the accident.
The family is hopeful in his recovery but will not have more information until some time has passed for the swelling in his spine to go down. This could take months. At this time the swelling in his spine has left him without feeling from the chest down. The next step is to wait for the swelling to subside and work on rehabilitation from that point.
Kirkland is expected to remain at the Akron City Hospital until stable and able to move on to a rehabilitation center. The family is currently sending updates on the following site: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/joshkirkland11. A benefit account will be set up sometime this week for donations. Further details will follow.
Friends and fans of Josh who would like to send him cards may do so to the following address:
Akron City HospitalRoom: T2 Unit – Josh Kirkland 525 E. Market Street Akron, OH 44304
A fundraiser was held this weekend at the Mudstock event at Bike Barn Raceway in Masontown, WV with all proceeds from the benefit going directly to Josh. Additional benefit races are scheduled for next weekend in Elkins, WV and Uhricksville, OH (Crow Canyon).
The family asks that you keep Josh in your thoughts and prayers as he begins his journey to recovery.