Kaweah Delta’s emergency trauma services unexpectedly meet weekend
warriors, like Samuel Franco, when the risks of adventure are greater
Samuel, 26, of Visalia, is athletic and motivated to work hard and play
hard. In July of 2015, during a regular outing, riding ATVs (all-terrain
vehicles) with his family, a mishap turned tragic.
Samuel was rushed to Kaweah Delta where he was seen by Neurosurgeon Dr.
Ian T. Johnson. “Dr. Johnson saved my life,” Samuel said.
The traumatic brain injury Samuel suffered caused bleeding inside his skull,
Dr. Johnson said. So he removed a portion of Samuel’s skull to give
his brain adequate space to swell and heal.
Without neurosurgical services close to home, Samuel may have bled to death
or suffered irreparable brain damage.
After surgery, Samuel struggled with hopelessness, but after being transferred
to the Kaweah Delta Rehabilitation Center, his outlook on life turned positive.
“When I arrived at rehab, I could not chew for myself, sit up, walk,
or move the left side of my body,” Samuel said. “But I realized
I got a second chance in life, and within weeks I learned to do everything
again. I could not have done it without the support of my family.”