DENVER — Nearly two months after a tragic accident left Sawyer Bartell paralyzed, the father of two was able to see his little girls.
"He said that’s the happiest he’s better since this all started," said Sawyer's wife Sara of the reunion.
We first met Sara at the end of May not long after their family found out life would be forever changed. The Florida couple was on vacation in Denver when Sawyer broke his neck in three places after diving into a pool.
"He does not have his hands yet. He has his biceps and his right wrist," Sara says of Sawyer's muscle function.
The Bartells were able to get into Craig Hospital almost immediately to begin his treatment.
"Sawyer‘s motivation has always been his girls and me," Sara said. "Being able to hold them in a limited way that he can is what drives him."
Jenna, 2, and 8-month-old Eila visited their dad this week to lift his spirits. They’ll be going back down to Florida soon while Sawyer continues to receive care in Colorado until the end of August.
"I love my children but knowing that they’re safe and at home and having a consistency is very important to us," Sara said, talking about their kids remaining in Florida.
Part of that consistency means keeping them in the daycare they’re familiar with.
"Being in the same daycare, in the same comfort level, to see the same people everyday, helps as we adjust everything else," explained Sara.
But as many parents can tell you, daycare isn’t cheap and the family is already realizing the long-term financial impact of Sawyer’s accident.
"We will need to buy a car, the care for the girls, the renovations on the house. All the walls, we decided, they need to come out because we need to widen all the doorways. We have to knock down walls so he’s able to get about the house," Sara tells Denver7.
As you always do, our Denver7 viewers came through in a big way by donating $4,000 for the family. They will be putting that money to pay for daycare for the two girls.
"Denver is amazing. The amount of support we received... it’s been almost overwhelming," Sara said.
If you'd like to donate to the family's GoFundMe page, click here.