Bill’s Major Surgery:
Bill developed aneurysms on his aortic artery, three to be exact, upper, mid, and lower all of which were a size that could lead to a rupture which would be catastrophic. His cardiologist suggested the we go to Houston Medical Center and consult with Dr. Crawford the only surgeon who was doing the lower fix.
We started the journey and met with Dr. Crawford and his 19 teen member team in training and agreed to have the surgery. Crawford was an amazing physician, since I was handling their finances the question of cost came up. His answer was simple whatever the insurance payed was his fee we never. We never received a bill!
The surgery lasted over ten hours with Bill’s body temperature being lowered to 90 degrees F . Bill then spent almost 3 months in intensive care recovering from the surgery because they could not get him off the respirator support due to his lung capacity. Probably caused by his smoking.
Finally we were ready to bring him home from Houston to Huntington Beach. When I went to check him out they printed his medical charges which amounted to three quarter of an inch of computer paper. Thank God I had a no limit American Express Card.
We were prepared for the worse when we looked at the total charges a little more than $431,000. I almost fainted! Thank God for doctors and medical centers that were truly there to help.
Tally and Thora stayed at a hotel that connected to the hospital by a walkway for the whole time. I would fly in every week to be with them and Pat came down to be there for a while also. Now it was white knuckle time for me.
He needed an oxygen tank to get home finding an airline that would allow it was difficult, hats off to American Airlines they allowed all of us to fly home. Bill and Tally were in first class and Thora and I were in coach so I would go up frequently and check on them and Mom said to me stop worrying.
I got upset and have to confess that I yelled at an Angel out of nervous frustration. She was right we made it and Bill recovered for a long time. We found out much later that one of the repairs was not successful which really upset Bill. You could see in him for the first time a lack of fight. While not being a physician, the lack of fight was probably a influencing factor in his passing.