Joseph Groh Foundation Gives Gift of Wheelchair Lift to Amputee Industry Professional

Chris’ Story

Chris Grubisa is a 32 year old journeyman with IBEW local 1579 in Blythe, Georgia. He is a long-term employee of Marko Electric. His wife Amber is a stay at home mom to their three children ages eight, five and three.

On Monday, October 23, 2017, Chris complained about joint pain in his left arm. It progressed ot the point that he could not use it properly. He assumed it was a gym injury. By 10:30 pm that evening, he had a fever and chills and assumed he was getting the flu. By the next morning, the situation had progressed to the point where Chris decided to go to the ER.

10 hour later his organs began to shut down and he was on life support.

Doctors informed the family that Chris might not make it through the night. His official diagnosis was a form of meningitis, specifically Meningococcal Neisseria with septicemia. It is a rare but serious bacterial infection that cause the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord to become inflamed. Chris developed a rash known a purpura, which caused second, third and fourth degree burns to 80-90% of his body. Doctors put him on medications that constricted his blood vessels in an attempt to keep his blood pressure up. The restricted blood flow to his extremities resulted in amputation of both arms and both legs. Chris spent more than 120 days in the ICU, enduring 21 surgeries in the process.

The fact that Chris is still alive is nothing short of a miracle. He was on a ventilator and 100% dialysis after his kidneys completely failed. He was required to have a feeding tube for months while undergoing skin graft surgeries to replace the skin burned off by the purpura. For months, Chris had physical and occupational therapy at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, learning to use his body again.

Chris returned home in May of 2018 to begin life in his new normal. One of the adjustments of this new normal includes moving into a handicapped accessible home, which was an effort spearheaded by the Burke County Sheriff’s office. Thus far, they have raised about $67,000 toward the initiative. Meanwhile, the family sought a wheelchair solution for a vehicle to transport Chris. His family learned about the Joseph Groh Foundation through The Walton Rehab Foundation and the Southeastern Firefighters Burn Foundation. They requested a wheelchair lift from Adaptive Driving Solutions, an expense they could not afford given the loss of Chris’ income coupled with the overwhelming medical expenses.

Your generous donations allowed us to grant the wish of Chris’ family.

After receiving the lift, Nick Grubisa, Chris’ father said, “Thank yo for your generosity. This means a lot to us. This is simply wonderful!”

Chris and his family have a long road ahead of them, but he has touched many lives through this unbelievable experience. His fight, strength, determination, endurance and his faith are lessons for all of us.

To give to this wonderful charity that provides medical supplies, equipment, automobiles and other life sustaining gifts to contracting professionals who suffer a life altering illness or accident, visit http://josephgrohfoundation.org.

To read more stories about Joseph Groh grant recipients, click here:

http://josephgrohfoundation.org/recipients.html

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