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PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2015 04:24 
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DailyMail wrote:
Driver had HEAD ripped from his spine in car crash and was given no chance in hospital - but now he is on his way home and determined to live his life again

Tony Cowan, of Durham, suffered horrendous injury in crash in September
Ex-bricklayer woke up just before life-support machine was to be turned off
He is almost completely paralysed but amazingly retained full brain activity
Courageous 29-year-old hopes to leave hospital in the next few months

By Jack Crone for MailOnline
Published: 19:47, 24 May 2015 | Updated: 09:07, 25 May 2015

A driver whose skull was ripped from his spine in a car crash has incredibly survived - and is almost ready to return home from hospital.

Tony Cowan, 29, suffered horrendous injuries following the crash in September last year and would have been decapitated had it not been for his muscle and tissue staying intact.

The ex-bricklayer has been been left almost entirely paralysed but is determined to carry on living after defying the odds by waking up just before his life support machine was due to be turned off.
Horrific injury: Tony Cowan's skull was ripped from his spine when he crashed his car in September last year
+7

Horrific injury: Tony Cowan's skull was ripped from his spine when he crashed his car in September last year

Mr Cowan's accident took place on September 9 last year when his car hit a speed-bump, spun out of control and became wrapped around a telephone pole.

His heart stopped and he had to be resuscitated by paramedics at the scene before being rushed to Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary by police escort.

He suffered a complete spinal cord injury and there appeared to be no brain activity - leading his partner of 10 years, Karen Dawson, to take the agonising decision to turn his life support machine off.

But after she, his mother Pepsi Cowan and the rest of his family had said their goodbyes, Mr Cowan miraculously opened his eyes.

Ordeal: The former bricklayer (pictured with his mother Pepsi and long-term partner Karen Dawson) hopes to leave hospital soon and live in a specially-adapted bungalow
Defied the odds: Mr Cowan suffered a complete spinal cord injury and consultants have since reattached his skull to his spine with a metal plate and bolts

His recovery has since amazed medics - who say he is not brain damaged despite his head snapping off from his spine.

Consultants have reattached his skull to his spine with a metal plate and bolts in a rare operation - and he hopes to soon go home.

Mr Cowan, who sustained similar injuries to Superman actor Christopher Reeve, said through his electric board: 'I love Karen with all my heart and I can't wait to go home to get back to the life I had.'

His family are now raising money for equipment so he can leave the Hawthorns Neurological Rehabilitation Centre in Peterlee to return home to a specially adapted bungalow in Chester-le-Street, Durham.

Mother-of-four Pepsi, 56, of Chester-le-Street, said: 'Tony's head was snapped off from his spine, there was only tissue and muscle holding his head on.

'The consultants had to make the decision to reattach his skull to his spine with a metal plate and bolts, they had never done an operation like it before and we were informed Tony would probably not survive - but again he pulled through.'

Shop assistant Pepsi, who has eight grandchildren, added: 'We were told by medics at the RVI that Tony had sustained the most cruel of injuries.
Before the accident: Mr Cowan was injured when his car hit a speed-bump, spun out of control and became wrapped around a telephone pole

Close bond: Mr Cowan's partner Karen Dawson (pictured together) said: 'I love him so much and it would mean the world to me to get him home'
'He will never breath on his own, he will always be on life support, he will never walk, he will never eat and they said he will never talk.
'He will have a shortened life and a serious infection could end his life.
'Tony has had pneumonia three times since Christmas, in which we thought we had lost him on each of those occasions, but yet again he pulled through.
'The consultants say Tony is a mystery and unique and they don't know how he is still alive.
'He has amazed the consultants by regaining some facial movements and learning how to smile, he can mime words and we make communication with him through an electric board.
'It's heartbreaking seeing my son like this and on several occasions he has asked me to end his life. He says he can not live like this, trapped in a body with no movement.
'That is not a decision I could make but because Tony is of sound mind, he can refuse all treatment if he was taken ill.
'Seeing your only son, lying crying, asking to end his life is a feeling I cant describe, It's just so heartbreaking,'

Factory worker Ms Dawson, 28, also of Chester-le-Street, said: 'I love him so much and it would mean the world to me to get him home. We were like two peas in a pod and spent all our time together.
'We are going to give Tony as much a normal life as possible, we have assured him we will be there for him ever day, and he will never be alone.
Supportive: Ms Dawson holds up an electronic word board as her partner of ten years attempts to learn how to communicate again

Supportive: Ms Dawson holds up an electronic word board as her partner of ten years attempts to learn how to communicate again
'After spending months in intensive care, Tony is now in rehab but there is nothing more that can be done for him, we want to give Tony, for whatever time he has left, a chance of some normality.
'We are in the process of trying to get Tony home, even though he needs 24/7 care and will have a care team move in with him.
'He will be provided with his special bed, all his life support equipment and medical supplies to keep him alive.
'He will be provided with physiotherapy for his chest, as he needs to cough assist as he can't swallow, but any physiotherapy for his limbs is not provided and this is the reason for this fundraising.
'We would like to provide Tony with an electric bike that will stimulate his limbs, stopping him from getting muscle weakness and stiffening up.
'We would also like a tilt table which is good for him. However, these two items are out of our budget, and we are asking for help and support to give Tony some quality of life.'

Ms Cowan added: 'Life is so cruel and I never thought one of my children would have to go through this, I would not wish this on my worst enemy.'

To donate to Tony's fund visit his page by clicking here.
If he lost control so badly I'm thinking this may have broken some suspension? No mention of any speed per se, but I see people go over them now at certainly around 20.
Don't hear of many st speed humps but you see so much damage around them, like pavement or central island marks and damaged concrete, that many numbers of vehicles have sustained some damage too.... how long before that vehicle needs to brake hard or swerve and then that's when the break happens.

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