A Cry Brings Smiles To Caleb Brown Family

Family Goes From Nightmare After Rock Injury To Lots Of Positive Signs

Monday, November 1, 2010
Caleb Brown
Caleb Brown

Most parents cringe when their children start to cry, but it was stuff for rejoicing when two-year-old Caleb Brown on Monday night let out a cry when he was being given a bath.

It was one of the first sounds Caleb had uttered since he was struck in the head by a basketball-sized rock at the base of Fall Creek Falls on Saturday, Oct. 16.

His father, Tim Brown, was being interviewed by Chattanoogan.com when his wife, Tiffany, could be heard laughing in the background. Mr. Brown said, "Excuse me, but my son just cried. It's the first time he's done that. This is really something."

The Brown family, which last week went through "a nightmare" when the news on Caleb was especially grim and there was a chance he might not make it, this week has been having some small miracles.

He survived attacks on his heart, lungs, kidneys and other vital organs and a high fever and rapid heart rate finally went away.

Doctors have decided it will not be necessary to perform a delicate operation to repair a section of his skull that broke away when the rock struck. The family was told that the piece did not penetrate the brain, and it is expected to eventually grow back together.

Caleb began to breathe on his own and was weaned from an air supply.

He began to open his eyes and to focus for a short time before drifting back into a semi-coma. Where there were fears about his vision, tests now show that his eyes are still good.

He was propped up and was able to briefly stay erect. He lay on his stomach and turned his head from one side to the other.

The family was delighted when he actually smiled and "giggled" when his parents were playing a familiar game with him.

Doctors at Children's Hospital are still working to wean him off a feeding tube.

Otherwise, he is ready to go to his next stop - the Scottish Rite Children's Rehabilitation Hospital in Atlanta where his physical therapy will continue. Mr. Brown said the family is hoping to make that move later this week or early next week. Currently, there are no beds available.

For now, Mr. Brown is leading therapy lessons he learned while tending his grandmother after she had a stroke years ago.

Caleb is with his parents and the Brown grandparents full time now in a room at the pediatric intensive care unit.

His Facebook page "filled up" with 5,000 fans and a new Fan Page has added another 2,000 who are closely following the drama involving the Nashville family.

One item just added to the page is a collection of pictures made on the Fall Creek Falls camping trip. Mr. Brown said the final one was made 30 seconds before the rock struck Caleb, who was in his mother's arms at the time.

Channel 5 from Nashville came down for a special segment that aired Monday night.

The 180 Degree ministry from Murfreesboro produced a long film that will be used as part of a fundraiser for the Browns.

Mr. Brown said, "We've got a long way to go, but we've made so much progress. We want to thank everybody for all their prayers and support. We keep hearing from tons of people.

"We've gone from a nightmare last week to hearing and seeing lots of good things this week."

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