Russell Troy Kelsey, or nephew and cousin, died on Sunday March 29, 2015 just before 7 PM. He was 37 years old. He had been in the hospital for almost two weeks. He went into the hospital for Celulitis--a skin infection that spreads across the area and causes redness, pain and swelling. Russell had this several times in his life as a truck driver. It requires strong antibiotics and often hospitalization. When the body is in distress with multiple problems (like diabetes, too) it is vulnerable to attacks of other infections like Necrotizing Fasciitis which Russell developed. He was sent to the Burn Unit of the University of Utah Hospital and they operated removing a big chunk of his leg. They said he would need many surgeries to get it all out.
Soon after surgery his breathing shut down and he went on a ventilator. He was pumped full of all kinds of medications to counteract the infections, but his body was just not able to fight it off. Eventually his heart was unable to pump oxygen to his body and brain so he had to be removed from lifesaving apparatus. That is the short version that I observed while visiting the hospital
The long and painful version was experienced by his wife, LeAnda, and Joy and John and family members as they waited out his stay in the hospital. I cannot convey the pain of such an ordeal.
Dan and I left when the Doctor gave the family the final news and it was so heart wrenching that I just had to go home and let the close family sit it out the rest of the day until arrangements could be made.
I can assure you that this has not gone down well with me. It is too close to the passing of our sweet Grandaughter, Emily. Too many difficult memories are brought to the surface--too many years of hospitals and surgeries and death. I have not been well since the funeral. The weather is grey and heavy and I just need some sun to help me get out of the funk. It is only half sunny today, and I still sit in my pjs at 1:30 PM and writing this is making me cry.
On to the pix.
You may recognize the backs of the cousins, Paul in the center and Johnny in the forefront. In the way back is Chet and LeAnn. I put this one in to show you that the Kelsey Family chose to wear purple shirts and ties to honor Russell because it was his favorite color. It was Grandpa Hunter's favorite color, too.
I won't put in pictures of the coffin. I just don't want to see that again.
Bethany had lots of fun playing with Karen, John's Sister. She had buttons on her wheel chair that lit up and were fun to push. Karen tickled her and she giggled.
I must say that she got along with Karen much better than with her grandma.
Here is Roger Kelsey. Still has a beard and mustache. I like the purple. He looks quite handsome.
This is the only picture Dan took that includes LeAnda, Russell's wife. On the left is Cindy, Adam's former wife, but always one of the family. Next to her is LeAnda, and on the couch is her family who drove in from Shreveport, Louisiana. We didn't get a good picture of his son, Brayden or his stepsons David and Thomas. Brayden is adorable and looks so much like Russell as a child.
Here is Johnny with his new son, James Dean Kelsey. He is so cute. John has lost weight and is looking very good.
Here is John's sister LaDoris. She is holding James Dean.
Graham and Debbie came down. Debbie is not in these pix. Left: Graham, Jenifer, Me, Bethany and Alicia.
Roger and his latest Grandson, born to Adam and his newest girlfriend.
Chet, Cindy, Clint and Dorothy (Dot) Chandler.
Dot, Jim Hall, Karen and LaDoris with Brayden Kelsey, Russell's boy, in the front in the black shirt. Yes, he is that old and they were married that long. Who knew?
This is me, John and Joy. It's a great picture. I like it.
Johnny and Paul. Brothers together.
LeAnn and Connor, Paul's Family.
The remainder of the pictures were taken at the cemetery. I picked ones that were interesting and memorable.
Here is half of Cindy, Dana Shepherd (all grown up at 15), Debbie Bronson, Jenifer Kelsey, Julie Hall, Alicia Woodruff and Connie Hall. It was windy and chilly.
Getting ready to release purple and white balloons. In the center is Henry Kelsey, John's younger brother, Clint Chandler, Graham and Debbie Hunter behind, James and Johnny and Joy Kelsey.
Releasing the balloons to honor Russell. Some blew into the trees and popped, buy the rest went into the sky on the way south.
After this we went to John and Joy's house for a delicious meal provided by Paul and LeAnn as a gift to the family.
I am going out for a walk with the dogs now before the sun disappears. Perhaps I should get my sweats on first.