DENVER -- A month after one Colorado man suffered horrific injuries in a devastating crash that stranded him in Asia, his family and friends helped facilitate a return.
Shawn Marshall's story began in November when he traveled with friends in Thailand. During a routine ride on a scooter, Marshall's family said an errant driver plowed into him while driving on the wrong side of the road.
Police reports from the Nov. 5 crash, according to the Marshall family, acknowledge Marshall is the clear victim. His injuries represented that. Doctors say he suffered a compressed skull fracture, brain contusions, lung contusions, a spinal fracture, dislodged vertebra and more.
Currently, Marshall can't move or feel his legs and has undergone a host of surgeries to help with recovery. A large step in his recovery was making the leap over the Pacific to get back to Denver.
According to Marshall's family, it took a month and an exorbitant amount of money to make that trip. Between a language barrier and travel concerns, the family had to organize a complicated return that would cost $60,000.
Marshall needed an IV, stretcher and various accommodations to be able to make the flight, however the flight hinged wholly on Marshall's health.
Doctors needed to ensure Marshall, who was temporarily in a coma and has fractures in his neck, could withstand the pressures of a flight. Requirements, such as a clean scan of his brain and blood work would take time and resources to complete.
Many of his family members took time off work to travel to be with Marshall, eventually racking up a hospital bill of at least $12,000.
Not long before his flight was set to depart, his mother wrote in a blog post that, "it's been three weeks since the accident. Considering all that Shawn has gone through, his healing to this point is a testament to how healthy he already was, and the power of all the wonderful healing energy streaming to him every day. For the most part, he is pain free, eating well, and sleeping a bit more."
Carol Marshall penned updates frequently for family and friends back in the states, keeping an upbeat attitude wherever possible. She pointed to the way the community has rallied around her son, helping to raise as much money for his treatment as possible.
To date, his family and friends have raised nearly $62,000 to help cover the flight and medical bills. Their goal is $100,000.
With Marshall comfortably resting in a Denver hospital, the Englewood family routinely has said they can't express how grateful they are to the Colorado community.
"We will never be able to adequately thank all the people who have reached out to help us in Thailand and from America, but have no doubt each and every prayer, good thought, kind word, smile, gesture, financial support and action done for Shawn and all of Shawn and [his girlfriend] Lauren's family will be played forward in the years to come," Mrs. Marshall said.
Those looking to continue to donate to this family can visit their fundraising page here, or see more on a Thursday fundraiser here.
Mrs. Marshall said, "This is a life changing experience, a turn on a road we did not expect to take. Because of all your love and support Shawn will continue to be the shining light he has always shared with others. We all will shine brighter, be kinder, love bigger. For this, I thank YOU."