As they watch their son recover from injuries sustained in a wreck two months ago, the Gordons say they are overwhelmed by the support they’ve received from the community and from across the nation.
“I try to update the Facebook page as much as I can,” said his mother, Cindy Gordon. “If it gets too long between, people will call because they care so much about how he is.”
She is speaking of the “Prayers for Matt Gordon” page, which now has more than 2,000 followers.
“That is the great thing about social media,” she said. “We can post about all of the milestones he’s hitting in his recovery.”
Matt Gordon celebrated his
20th birthday on Dec. 20 at Shepherd Center in Atlanta, where he is still undergoing rehabilitation.
The former Model High varsity baseball player was seriously injured on Nov. 7, as he was driving home on Old 53 near Ward Mountain Road after an evening of hanging out with friends. While no one knows exactly what happened, police think he must have fallen asleep behind the wheel and lost control of his truck.
The truck drifted across the road, down an embankment and hit a drainage ditch.
Matt Gordon’s injuries were so severe, he had to be taken to Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga — the region’s only Level 1 trauma center. While patients are usually airlifted, the weather that night was so rough, it was decided it would be safer to drive him.
He had multiple fractures, including a broken bone in his right leg, multiple broken bones in his left leg, multiple facial fractures, two broken ribs and a fracture at the back of his skull.
After several weeks at Erlanger, where he underwent four surgeries, he was transferred to Shepherd Center. He spent three weeks in the ICU there and had two more surgeries.
He’s still there now, with his parents, undergoing physical therapy. Cindy Gordon said they are hoping he will be able to come home in February.
“He is progressing really well,” she said. “He is doing therapy about three or four hours a day and eventually will get up to all-day sessions once he builds up strength.”
Doctors have told the Gordons they expect Matt to make a full recovery.
“He is full of questions,” explained his mom. “He doesn’t remember anything about the wreck, so we’ve had to tell him about it.”
His spirits are strong, though, she said. Matt, who graduated from Model in 2014, played catcher for three of his four years of varsity baseball. He has always been active and not afraid to push himself.
“He’s used to hard work,” said Cindy Gordon. “This is a long journey for him, but he is very determined and very aware of what he needs to do.”
She said the center has the ability to focus on what patients enjoy doing as part of their therapy.
“They find out what he is interested in and they build their therapy sessions around that,” she said. “If someone likes kayaking or swimming, for instance.”
She has enjoyed telling Matt about the support he’s had, she said.
“He’s really been touched by what everyone has been doing,” she said. “Just seeing how many people care about him and want him to do well has been wonderful. It brightens his spirit.”
While he’s been receiving visitors and cards and well-wishes from friends, the whole family is receiving a lot of support, even from people they don’t know.
“People comment on the Facebook page, total strangers who have been through a similar experience,” she said. “It makes it easier for us, because it shows us a light at the end of the tunnel.”