07/02/2013: LARRY IS BACK TO WORK! He still has a long road ahead, and some healing to do, but he is anxious to get the facility ready for the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals and work with his guys around the track. We are all thrilled to see him back!
This morning a non-race related fire incident took place on the race track while heating and scrapping excess rubber off the track surface.
Our Facility Manager, Larry Crispe, was burned in this incident. He was transported to University Hospital to be treated for burns. Family has reported that Crispe is still being treated for his burns at this time. No other injuries or persons were involved.
The family asks that you continue to pray for Larry has he begins his recovery. For those that know Larry, you can expect to see him at the track again very soon. The messages of thoughts and prayers received already are appreciated.
Larry is already making list of things that need done and using his phone. He will remain in the Burn Unit at University Hospital for up to two weeks as they monitor and aid his healing and ward off infections.
The entire family feels overwhelmed by the support from friends within the industry that have offered prayers, thoughts, support, and assistance while Larry recovers. They have only asked for your continued prayers for a speedy and smooth recovery at this time. Flowers are not allowed in the Burn Unit at the hospital, and frankly, but the number of people that have reached out, the hospital is only so big, anyways. Thank you all so much for the messages shared with us on Facebook, as well as to family and staff via phone, text, and emails. What an amazing community and group of friends Larry and his family are blessed to share.
***A note from Track Chaplain Ken Webb:
Thank for all of the outpouring and love for Larry, his family and the staff of Bandimere Speedway. They are very blessed to have a great community that cares about them.
I have heard from many people who would like to do something to help. After talking with the family and staff at the hospital I think I have a few ideas. Larry enjoys a good sweet tea and ice cream. He won't get that from the menu in the hospital. We can bless him by donating gift cards to local restaurants that he enjoys so that Johnna can sneak him some treats. He likes Panera Bread, Chik-fil-A and McDonalds. Gift cards also bless Johnna with the chance to get a break.
All cards and thing can be sent to the track. We will make sure he gets them.
At this time Larry is not able to have visitors due to the risk of infection. Please continue to pray for him and his family.
UPDATE FROM JOHNNA CRISPE 6/12/2013: :As many of you now know Larry had an accident on Monday morning with the skid steer/scraper as he was scraping the race track. He just can't seem to go one day without jumping on one of the pieces of equipment, drinking his chocolate milk or sweet tea and relishing in what he tries to make perfect......Our (YOUR) race track! He loves the challenge and he calls it, "his baby". Yesterday morning was no different as he wanted to get a jump on the big job that lied ahead in preparation for the Lucas Oil Divisional race this weekend. This time though he wasn't going to jump out of the machine to tend to another need around the facility, he was jumping out to save his life. In doing so he sustained burn injuries.
It's Tuesday, late afternoon and I'm sitting in his room, it's quiet, he's quiet but I know his wheels are turning as to how he can make his great escape out of here. Thank goodness he's on the 3rd floor and it would be quite a jump if he tried. Larry being confined to a bed, chair, watching tv with no radio, ear piece or scooter is just not his style. Many of you know him to be a rough, tough and a no nonsense guy but he truly has a contagious love for racing and the racing community. He's so mad at himself for the absence he's going to have from all of you. As I'm playing secretary for him, I'm overwhelmed with the hundreds of well wishes, prayers, and the asking of "is there anything we can do"? His needs are small but his heart is big. Larry knows he was spared for something that only God knows and has planned for his life. Our family quite often says "For such a time as this"! This would be a great time to do something kind for someone else on behalf of Larry. This would bring all of us more joy than you can imagine. Try it and we'd love to hear your stories.
Thank you, again and again for your phone calls, e-mails, texts, twitters, Facebook comments, flowers, baskets of goodies, cards etc. We are humbled at the generosity and outpouring of love towards Larry, myself, the boys and our entire family and Bandimere staff.
I plan to keep you all updated on Larry's condition and progress.
We have a rock that I brought from home and it's sitting by Larry's bed, it's a daily reminder of a verse in the bible. II Samuel 22:3, "God is my rock, in Him will I trust......"
UPDATE FROM JOHNNA 6/14/2013:
Today, Friday, Larry was scheduled for surgery to do some grafting on his left arm and left leg. The doctors postponed this until Monday. It isn't totally clear to us as to why, but we're trusting that they want to see if there's more healing that will occur in the next few days.................Actually, Larry has been talking up this weekend of racing to all the doctors and nursing staff so we're thinking he bought a 3 day ticket to come see the action!! Of course, we're just kidding but if you don't find a little bit of humor in what seems to be a long road ahead, we'd go crazy. On another funny note, Cale and Cody visited last night and were helping him exercise by walking around the ICU unit. Several of us had to wait in the waiting area as they limit visitors. As we were chatting we hear whispers and soft steps. You guessed it, the boys were trying (with Larry's command) to actually pull off the Great Escape. Needless to say, it didn't work and the patient was in big trouble!
He's been having good hours and then some really rough hours. His spirits are good though and he wants to convey to ALL of you to have a safe, fun and successful weekend. He misses you and just can't wait to be back to the track sitting on his green machine!
I Thessalonians 1:4 - "....God not only loves you very much but also has put His hands on you for something special." (The Message)
SATURDAY 6/15 UPDATE
It's Saturday morning here in the colorful ICU room. I say that because we're all wearing these gorgeous gowns. Larry in green, I in blue and the staff in yellow. He contracted MRSA which is a form of infection, therefore we have to cover up. Visitors are now limited to family only. We've enjoyed all the company this far but for Larry's protection they've asked us to do this. It will be our new "normal" for awhile. Sporty set up FaceTime yesterday to allow us to connect with the qualifying passes. Technology is awesome! Larry thoroughly enjoyed partaking and it made his afternoon, although tough to adjust to a spectator. He paid extra for the restricted area.....virtual RA, that is! We'll connect again today and he's anxious to see those track records broken. He couldn't be more confident in the fact that you're in the best hands ever! After one of the runs yesterday, he piped up with excitement and said "That's my boys"! Thanks to ALL of Larry's staff for giving those two the support they need right now. God bless each and everyone one of you today. Safe runs! I may pop out there for a bit to check up on things........bet you can guess who wants me to do that? First guess doesn't count!
Psalms 100:1 Make a joyful noise unto The Lord........
This was a verse that my dad made me memorize as a young child. So glad he did! Actually, he made me memorize the whole chapter. I'll share more later.
SUNDAY 6/15/2013 UPDATE....
Yesterday, (Saturday) started off rough but as the day progressed things settled. By process of elimination or additions to, his meds are being figured out. He's never been on much medication so throwing this much at him has been interesting. Oh, the things he's said while sedated. I think it's fair to say "what happens in ICU, stays in ICU"! His body is still continuing to show signs of healing so for now any skin grafting is still on hold. As his wife, my prayer is that the weakness and pain he's experiencing will soon subside. If you know Larry well, you know that the first thing he puts in his pocket every morning is a small crescent wrench. Strange, but it's something he's done for years. He says you can fix everything with that one tool. Today he looked at the crescent wrench that I'm carrying in my back pocket and he said "I wish I could fix this too"! I told him that the definition of a crescent wrench is an adjustable tool for gripping........so, adjust, grip tight and let God be the fixer of this one. He smiled.......yep!
Today, Father's Day! Larry always wondered when he'd get the opportunity to have one of these holidays off again. As we've had time to reflect together we were thinking of a couple of Father's Days that we did have off. Cody broke his arm and we spent part of the day in the ER, another was Cale crashing on his dirt bike, ending with a broken arm too. Many of my Mother's Days have been spent painting the starting line with Larry and the boys in advance preparation for the Night of Fire and Thunder. Strange how the tables have turned and this year on Father's Day I'm painting again, painting a picture of thankfulness. The lines aren't as straight and clear as the canvas on the track but I'm willing to be patient and color in the lines day by day. Can't wait to look back and tell Larry what a wonderful portrayal of strength he's given to us.
Happy Father's Day to ALL the dads out there. Enjoy every minute no matter where your at or what you're doing?
Psalms 100:5 For The Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
UPDATE - WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19: It's Tuesday afternoon and we're still in ICU. Well, lets back up...... Monday was "nobody home" for the better part of the day. Pretty quiet afternoon and evening, talking to myself. At least no one was arguing with me, right? It felt a little lonely but I know he needed the rest, quietness and the temporary feeling of little pain. Both the boys had brief conversations with him on the phone.....those were a hoot! He had a PICC line put in as the vein selection is getting slim. Uncomfortable procedure but hopefully no more pokes here, there and everywhere. Back to today.....This afternoon there was a tornado warning for DIA and surrounding areas. Sirens were sounding. Here we sit, wondering? Kept us on the edge of our seats. He did do a little work today by placing a fuel order. 1,000 gallons, that is. The phone he used was the University Hospital phone. He ordered and then they quickly called the track (Cody) right back to verify that the order was not a joke. He replied "It's not a joke, it's a real order". Funny how his mind is still working and thinking of the things he CAN DO to help, even from his bedside. Surgery is scheduled for tomorrow morning (Wednesday) for skin grafting. I'd be fibbing if I said he wasn't nervous. He is! As tomorrow approaches, I pray that God will give Larry the peace and strength that only He can.
I will leave you today not with a scripture verse but the mention of a song that I heard last Monday as I was driving home from the hospital, just after his accident. I hadn't heard it before that day. The song is by Meredith Andrews and it's called, "Not For A Moment". ALL of us, not just me (us) are dealing with something in our lives that is so much greater than we alone can handle ourselves. I desperately felt that way as I know Larry did too. Music, many times ministers to me and gets me back on my feet again. I hope it does that for you as well. Find this song, listen and enjoy!
LARRY UPDATE - Thursday, June 20: Today, Wednesday has been one of the best day since.......well, I think June 9th. Larry had his successful surgery of skin grafting. After they did the debriding and versa-jetting him (another words pressure washed him), xenografts were used instead of his skin. That's exactly what we were hoping for. Xenograft is really a glorified name for pig skin. They're in hopes that this skin will serve as a bandaid to let his own skin heal beneath. Our prayer is that his body will let this process work and no other grafting will be needed. One area on his leg is questionable but they want to give it time before they make any other decisions. We are thrilled with this outcome today. The pain he's experiencing is still requiring some hefty dosages of meds. He hates the way they make him feel but he also realizes that he can't bear it without them. As soon as his pain is managed they'll discharge him to go HOME! We're hopeful for that in a couple of days. I capitalized HOME for a reason as I know he'll be wanting my car to drift to the race track. I may consider a drive-by. It will be imperative that he allows his body ample amount of time to recover and heal properly. Although we've had wonderful care here, we don't want to return anytime soon.
Larry has a giant stack of "well wishing" cards, here in his room. He's been so heavily medicated that I've held all of them for his opening until he could read each and everyone on his own. I'm guessing tomorrow we'll sit together and he can finally open and enjoy them. I know he'll be humbled and emotional over the amount of love that everyone has shown him. He's had many accidents and hospitalizations in his life but this one will be the most life changing. He asked me earlier tonight for his phone, he then looked at me and said "never mind, nothing is as important as our time together". I LOVED THAT!
I'll leave you tonight with something that Larry and I talked about last night as he was anticipating his surgery today. He was visibly and verbally concerned and worried about how several areas of his body were going to look with scarring. I gave him a reassuring grin (ok, through a few tears too) and told him that it will be a great conversation starter, story and platform for our faith. Just think, we happen to personally know a pretty cool guy that has a brow of scars from thorns and nail pierced hands and feet. It's the greatest story ever told!
LARRY UPDATE Monday 6/24/13
Sunday! We're home! One day ahead of schedule! Xenografts are working nicely but still experiencing a lot of pain, especially in his left arm. When he was in the hospital he was having a hard time regulating his body temperature. I was thinking this would subside once we left the somewhat inconsistent hospital temps, but I was wrong. The ride home was air on, air off, window down, chills, then sweating all in 45 minutes. Zowee, Xcel is going to love us. As he heals I'm sure it will get better each day. He's settling in, a bit exhausted and now resting......well, he's trying. Our little yorkie, Burney wants him to play. He's confused as he's not sure where Larry's been for two weeks. Larry's not quite ready for playtime!
As I sit next to Larry writing this, I'm thinking back to all that has happened in the last two weeks. Amazing where we were and where we've come. Hebrews 13:5 says; I will never leave you or forsake you! What an awesome promise God gives us. The next few weeks we'll learn to be content and thankful with even the smallest steps on the road to recovery. Your continued prayers for strength not only physically but mentally and emotionally will be appreciated. He misses everyone and as I've said before, he's anxious to once again be behind the controls of the green machine. Speaking of green machine..... As he preps the track, I've heard him say many times, "I bout got 'er, it's comin' around"! This "downtime" will be much the same! Go LARRY! Thanks to all those who are helping him make this possible.
LARRY UPDATE Monday 7/15/13
I felt it appropriate to update Larry's progress on the one month date from when his accident happened. I started to write last evening and then Larry asked me to go get a chocolate dipped ice cream cone. That won me over so I apologize for not getting this complete and posted. I was good about my updates when he was hospitalized as I had lots of sitting time. Once I got him home, the work set in for me and I feel bad if I've left you all hanging.
Larry's recovery is going remarkably well. For those that frequent the track, you've seen him back! He hasn't taken his place on any equipment yet but he's satisfied for now driving his truck around, doing office work and occasionally scooting around on his scooter. His injured areas are healing nicely, in fact ahead of schedule to where the "norm" would be. When he was in the hospital they told him that his recovery time would be based on him getting good circulation to help blood flow and of course his attitude. Looking at him, he DID IT!!! He looks great and his attitude through all this has remained positive. He still tires easily and says he doesn't feel great but that will improve in time as well. Keeping him out of the sun has also been a challenge. He has several more check ups ahead of him of which we're confident will be good. With the Mopar Mile High Nationals knocking at the door, he's anxious and busy again but he also knows his limitations (or rather I've been gently reminding him) So many have stepped up to help him and for that he's grateful. When I say grateful, that seems like such an understatement as the outpouring of care, concern and thoughtfulness has been overwhelming to he and I. We finally finished opening up his cards this last week which was really fun for us. We thoroughly enjoyed going through each and every one. We laughed at some and cried at some. What an amazing support group you have been to us. He has stated many times that he feels so inadequate to receive so much attention.......he just wants to get back to doing what he loves to do. He's got lots of new tricks swirling around in his head to make track prep even better.
We're not closing this chapter of our lives by any means. In fact, it's opened up so many new chapters that we're having a difficult time knowing how to arrange them all. There's lyrics to a song that goes "when trials of this life are His (Gods) blessings in disguise". We never thoroughly understood that concept until now. Many may or may not know that Larry and I have been married for 28 years. He has been a workaholic for many of these years. In the past month he and I have had more quality time together than I can ever remember. Even through his pain and the stress of this situation the blessings have far outweighed any other feeling. We've loved getting reacquainted with each other and I'm so glad God protected him to give us that much needed opportunity. Thank you!
My closing comment for this update today is.....Psalms 139:14 I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.......