In early August, Rachel Joramo was getting ready to go back to school for her senior year at Butterfield-Odin Schools. Unfortunately an incident occurred that would have to delay her first day of school as a senior.
Joramo was travelling near Fairmont in the passenger seat of a pick-up truck when the vehicle was in an accident. The driver of the truck was able to walk away from the wreck with little to show for injuries, Joramo, however, was not so lucky. Even though she was strapped in with a seat belt, she still ended up getting thrown through the back window of the truck and onto the road.

Joramo suffered many injuries including, a shattered wrist, other broken bones, internal injuries, and a severe brain injury. She was airlifted to St. Mary’s hospital in Rochester.

One of the first things the doctors were worried about was the pressure the swelling brain was having on the skull. A hole was drilled in her skull and a fiber optic cable was put in so the doctors could moniter the pressure.

There was also a problem with Joramo’s spleen which was bleeding off and on, so the doctors kept a close eye on that. She also had a shattered right wrist, as well as fractures on the left side of her face from her eyebrow down to her chin.

The next morning the doctors were still concerned about her bleeding spleen. They needed to give her blood that morning due to the amount she had lost, and scheduled an MRI for later in the afternoon.
Later on in the day Joramo had a portion of her spleen emobilized. This means that radiation was used to kill some of the cells in her spleen in order to stop the bleeding. With this procedure being done the doctors decided to hold off on the MRI until the next day.

The following morning Rachel was very responsive, so much so that the doctors decided an MRI was not necessary. She was finally able to tell doctors and family members where she is in pain, and was able to shake her head yes or no. Much to Joramo’s delight, the breathing tube was also able to come out and she was able to drink and eat real food.

After a week or so in the hospital, Joramo was able to return home and start her return to Butterfield-Odin Schools and her senior year of high school. The first semester of classes were a little difficult with Joramo attending physical therapy in Rochester once a week, and along with her adapting to her condition. As time went along things became easier when it comes to school. Amazingly, after everything she has been through, she is still on track to graduate in the spring, and she still plans on attending college after she is done with high school.

Rachel has received support from her family and friends through her time in the hospital. There will be another opportunity to support Rachel Joramo at a benefit. This benefit is being put on by the Thrivent Action Team on Sunday, January 15 from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the American Legion. At the benefit there will be breakfast/brunch served with ham, eggs, potato dish, pastries, and beverages. There will also be a silent auction, to donate  items for the auction contact Leora Ask at 507-327-8265. If making the benefit is not a possibility donations can still be made by sending donations to P.O. Box 366, St. James, and the checks should be written out to Marge Johnson.

For more information please see the January 12 print edition of the St. James Plaindealer.