Rich's brother Tommy was born with hydrocephalus almost 40 years ago. He is blind, crippled and severely mentally retarded. That's what the medical records will tell you. What they might not tell you is that he loves chocolate chip cookies. And that if you play a game with him where you thump the floor then he thumps the floor, you might be playing that game for hours. He likes to yell, too. Loudly. And he cries when you play sad music. He likes to shake a maraca into his hand and he says a word that sounds like "bong bong" all day long. He also points to his mouth when he wants to eat, which is left over from when he knew more sign language. He loves it when he is surrounded by all 10 of his brothers and sisters, which usually happens only at Christmas. When he hears all of the fury of unwrappings on Christmas morning, he thinks it's the sound of someone unwrapping a candy for him. If he doesn't get that candy and soon he yells.
Yesterday our Tom-tom's heart stopped for 15 minutes. The doctors are sure that his already damaged brain is now damaged completely and irreparably. Today we find out whether this is true. If it is Rich's family will make the heartbreaking decision to let Tommy go. Please say a little prayer for Rich's mother and all of our family that they will have the strength.
Update Tommy died yesterday, February 14. He slipped away very peacefully and without any struggle.
If you would like to make a donation in Tommy's honor, please click here. Please indicate that the gift is in memory of Tommy Powers. There's a place that allows you to indicate where a card announcing your gift should be sent. Rich's mother would be so appreciative. Her address is: Loretta Powers, 6908 Foster Street, District Heights, MD 20747