Brown spent the winter in the hospital battling COVID. There were a few close calls. On Christmas Eve, doctors feared the retired CPA might not make it. In addition to COVID, Brown was also battling double pneumonia at one point, as well as an E-coli infection he contracted , said his wife. But he fought to stay alive regardless.
His wife Cindy said while he was on a ventilator, one of his four children came up with the nickname “Papa Bear” to encourage him to fight.
“She kept telling him to keep sleeping like a ‘Papa Bear’ and hibernate just because we know you’re going to fight and come home,” she says.
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Brown spent over 50 days on a ventilator. Meanwhile, his wife says nurses at Long Beach Medical Center helped the family stay in touch with a small voice recorder to get their messages through. Just affirming words, and just saying, ‘You are a fighter. You got this. With each new day, you get better. You get stronger. You are healthier. You are going to go home. . We’re going to have our Christmas together, ”she said.
The family has yet to open their Christmas presents. They were waiting for Brown to come home. Cindy says she is helping raise funds for the hospital to add devices and technology to help families connect with loved ones in the hospital. It’s something she says helped Brown fight and survive.
Brown is now in rehab at the Memorial Care Rehabilitation Institute at Long Beach Medical Center. The good news is that he will be released from the hospital soon. He is expected to go home this weekend.
So what’s the first thing he wants to do when he gets home?
“Kiss my standing wife.” And then my son will be there. See our puppies. You know the fresh air, the sun, I can’t wait. I can’t wait to get in the car, roll the window and let the breeze hit me, ”he says.
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