Friday, November 21, 2008

Second leg down!!

Today Rob went to surgery bright and early. While he was in surgery, Nebraska Congressman Adrian Smith came and saw us. It was great visiting with him. After he left, Col Wesley came. Col Wesley is an amazing person. He was Rob's old Battalion Commander when Rob deployed out of Ft Riley to Iraq from 2005-2006. Rob has the upmost respect for him. It was so WONDERFUL seeing him and spending time with him. I know it will mean so much to Rob. We got word around 2:30 that Rob was out of surgery. The surgery went REALLY well. They only had to take a tiny amount of bone from Rob's right leg to close it up so he still has his knee. This is HUGE for the prosthetics!!!! We're so excited. They also closed up some more on his left leg. On Monday they will skin graft the areas on his thigh that are still open from the fasciotomies. He received 4 liters of fluid and 2 units of blood. They informed us that he was EXTREMELY swollen, but I didn't realize that they REALLY MEANT EXTREMELY SWOLLEN!!! He looked like the Michelin Man. Poor guy. The sclera of his eyes were even swollen. He could hardly blink. I think he was so swollen today because he was still a little swollen from Wednesday's surgery and between that and the fluids he received today, it really caught up with him. But, after a day or so, it goes down. You could tell he was exhausted so we saw him for a few minutes and let him sleep. We will be back tonight. His sister, Jenny, flew in last night so that was nice seeing him with his eyes open. Last time she was here, he was still unconscious. Hopefully, he'll be back to his normal face by the time she leaves so she can really see how much progress he's made. As I was reading the comments, I noticed someone was concerned about what type of bed he has to prevent bed sores. He has wonderful beds. In fact, Rob gets quite annoyed with them at times. You can tell that he absolutely hates the "pulmonary exercises" he receives from it. It makes the bed shake so that his lungs don't get pneumonia. One day Barb and I couldn't help but giggle because Rob was perfectly fine and then that bed started up and he immediately got the "grumpy Rob face." But we tell him it's for his own good. The last thing he needs is a bad case of pneumonia!!! He also gets rotated back and forth on the bed-which also annoys him. It's like when you're riding in a car and fall asleep and your head falls forward and you wake up suddenly. Well, Rob will just have fallen asleep, and his bed turns him on his side, and it jerks him awake. Poor guy. You just can't sleep in a hospital!! His bed also inflates and deflates air so it's constantly taking pressure off his pressure points. Obviously, you can't 100% prevent bed sores but they're being as careful as they can and doing all they can do prevent these. He's also starting PT-I believe within the next couple of days. Someone else has mentioned the wonderful work the Fisher Homes have done for the military! YES YES YES!!! Mr and Mrs Fisher were wonderful people. I don't know what we and so many others in our situations would do without them. If you have time, you should google them and see all the wonderful things they have done. So, again a good day. Obviously Rob was not as responsive but that's to be expected coming out of a 6 hour surgery. We'll just keep praying and praying and praying........


Greg said...

More great news!!!!!

Anonymous said...

That's great news! Rob is making so much progress.

Beth and Beau

Nancy Kules said...

Sounds like today was steady progress, and we are SO happy about the below knee news- you are so right about the difference that will make in regards to prosthetics!


Michelle Nelson said...


I am so happy to hear that Rob's surgery went well and that he is able to keep his knee! It sounds like, all in all, it was a great day.

I too had to giggle at the thought of Rob being disturbed during sleep to reposition his body. How aggravating for Rob, but as we know, absolutely necessary. How great it is to know that Rob is getting the best treatment available at the hospital and you are as well at the Fisher House.

It goes without saying, but you, Rob, and your families are always in our thoughts and prayers!


Gisslers said...

I am so glad that his surgery went well. I was thinking of him all day. Hopefully he will be able to get some good rest over the weekend and continue to be more responsive.

Love you
Shelly, Aaron and Megan

Annaka and Aaron said...

Yeahhh!!! We love hearing that Rob is making progress!!! Love ya,
Annaka, Aaron, Aizlynna and Amarae

Love from MN said...

wonderful news on a successful surgery. We will continue our prayers for his healing.

Love Aunt Julie(Schott)Davidson

Heather said...

Praise God! More prayers coming your way!
Heather S

the Joneses said...

Oh, Dena,
What a wonderful report on your wonderful day! Hang in there - you're doing great, and so is he!
Love ya,
Cheryl & Monty

Aunt Nancy said...

WooooOHOOOOO! How AWESOME to have Another great day and so MANY MORE to come! I have had Rob in my thoughts & PRAYERS all day...and, even woke up in the middle of the night last night twice, you know it...I did what I COULD DO and that is PRAY!
We will just keep our eyes up and continue praying that he heals quickly & without any infections or setbacks!
I understand that your Dad and girls will be staying at my house Monday so, I can get them to the airport...I'll get all the SMOOCHING practiced and primed up so, they are ready for you!! :))
xoxoxo love you, Aunt Nancy & Uncle Steve

oross said...

Hi i just read yesterdays post which made me tear up and todays post was just as good. im so happy things are going well. continued prayers

JoAnne Bartek said...

We are so happy to hear of another successful surgery. Also glad that you were able to spend some time with your special guests today. It sounds like Rob is getting the best care possible. Keep the faith and we'll keep praying.

Aunt Jo, Uncle Steve, Brooke & Ashley

Carol said...

Great to hear that Rob had another good day. Love Carol

Anonymous said...

Good news! I love to log on here and see good news! Dena - your post sounds upbeat today. I hope that means you are getting enough rest and feeling better about everything. Prayers continue from Georgia.
Carol Dzurenko

Anonymous said...


When I read your daily journal - I am just so amazed at your spirit - you are so awesome and your hubby is extremely lucky to have you. And his will is amazing as well - I am so happy for you both that his surgery went well. He sounds like quite the character - and it will be that attitude that will help him in the days to come.

And I for one - am so proud of your husband and all the men and women in uniform who dedicate themselves to protecting us - I include the military - the police and fire fighters - may God protect them all.

Many prayers and positive thoughts coming your way from Omaha, NE. God Bless.

Donna said...

Another good day, that's great! We will keep praying.

Donna W.
El Paso, TX

Anonymous said...

Dena-I've posted before, we've never met, but I think our husbands deployed together from Ft. Riley in 2003. I read your posts daily and am amazed at your strength.
I must have gotten behind on reading the commments and missed the negative one from the idiot-but I can only gather what was said from the other comments. I shared with my husband and he wants to do an all out internet search to find him and go destroy him.
Enough of that-Stay with the positives-and those are that Rob is making progress-you are blessed with Faith and have the support of SO many of us behind you.

Prayers continue from Fort Lewis-
Kim and Jeff Jablonski

Anonymous said...

We are so happy to hear such great news about Rob's leg. Dena... we admire you just as much as we admire our hero, Rob. I hope that you guys have a Happy Thanksgiving. We give thanks to God for letting our hero stay here on earth for a little longer.
Stay strong and pray hard.

Lots of love from Bowie, MD

Maggie45 said...

Still praying...and with a nice big grin on my face after reading your post.

Maggie Goff
Bisbee, Az

Joyce Winfield said...


Another very good day for Rob. It's great to log on and see such encouraging and positive updates. We give thanks and praise to God for the fantastic progress Rob is making in his recovery.

Much love,
Aunt Joyce and Uncle Doug

Nancy Christian said...

I'm soooooo happy to hear this! I hope that his PT will be the point in which he will be able to communicate more. I know that when I did my menial PT crap I was cussing up a storm! :)

Faith Jordan said...

The prayers keep coming from Osceola. I am so glad the news continues to be on the upswing!
I saw your dad, Dena, at the grocery store. He is thrilled to be bringing the girls to you and Rob. Knowing your Dad and Mom, you come by your strength and faith quite naturally.
God's blessings to all of you!!

Donna Mentink

Anonymous said...

HALLELUJAH! What great news! I really liked yesterday's blog about the downloaded music. You know me, music always touches my heart, too. You and Rob and doing so well because of your faith and love for each other. You are an inspiration to all of us. We all love you both and are continuing to pray because IT WORKS!!! Keep playing music!
Your old piano teacher, Carita

Anonymous said...


That is great news about Rob's surgery. He is making wonderful progress. Glad to hear that you will all be together for Thanksgiving. Rob is continually in our thoughts and prayers.

Debbie and Caroline Runquist

The Davidsons said...

The progress is wonderful and we are thrilled for the both of you! You and Rob continue to be in our thoughts and prayers. Just think of how many thanks you'll have to share this Thanksgiving! May God Bless and keep you both!
Todd & Carlie Davidson & Family

Anonymous said...


It it truly heart warming to read how well Rob is doing and how far he has come in just a few short weeks!!!!!! Thank you so much for keeping up your blog it really does help keep spirits up here at LRMC to know how well your husband is doing.

Rachel RN

Lisa said...

I am so happy that he now has both legs down. It sounds like the old Rob is definitely coming through. When describe him getting grumpy I can picture him perfectly. I know that annoyed look he gets. :)
And I'm so happy Col. Wesley was able to come see him. I've been wondering if he would. I know it'll mean the world to Rob to know he was there. He's always sung Col. Wesley's praises and Ryan wholeheartedly agrees. Let Rob know all the "Bulldogs" are praying for him daily.

Theresa O. said...

Rob and Dena...

Yeah on a great day. May you have a restful and peaceful weekend... The bed is awesome and better than having him "handled" by people to turn. I'm sure he hates it, but he can complain about it later on..

Dena, thank you for the updates. I hope you aunts and uncles are doing well too.

Sending prayers and blessings your way.

Theresa O.
Pleasanton, NE

Scott Danner said...

Hey Ms. Dena,
Rahel, I and many others have kept you and your family in our prayers! This web of concern is amazing. Many of Rahel's fellow pastors have spread the word through the States and Canada. It even came full circle at work when one of the folks asked if the guy that I had we visited was at Landsthul. Her Priest had been spreading the word about Rob. There are lots of folks invested in getting you guys healthy! All of our best to you and your extended family!
LTC Danner

Anonymous said...

Another great report I pray that they contiue.

Philip Davis

Anonymous said...

Wonderful news! Continuing to pray.

Annieb said...

Great News, Praise God on High! We have been praying for CPT Rob since we found out about him. We have published his info. on our website and we have a show on, where we have been giving updates about Rob and sending people to your website. Me and my husband are ministers of the gospel, and getting people to pray for Rob is a mission that God has placed in our hearts. Our show tonight we were talking & lifting up Rob. Please come and listen and get inspired at
God Bless CPT Rob and Dena.

Matt Clinton said...

I just want to tell you that I know prayers work. I am in a situation where I'm currently paralyzed from the neck down. When this first happened the doctors said I would die and even if I survived I would never get anything back. But with a lot of prayers and positive thinking I am getting movement back throughout my whole body and can now feed myself. I know that with time prayers can heal all things.

Anonymous said...

Dena and Rob,
I know that God is watching over and answering our prayers.
Cathy Bell

Anonymous said...

"Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided-
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!

Praising God for His all knowing, timely steps of faithfulness towards Dena, Rob, and us all!

Christ's Love from 2 LT Chad Lorenz
and his mom, Mary-Dell

Anonymous said...

Dena and all,

I so appreciate this blog. My heart and prayers go out to you all. The progress is sounding great! Dena, I talked to your Dad the other day and he's so excited about getting to bring the girls to you next week. I pray that he has an uneventful trip and you all have a blessed Thanksgiving together. Prayers here continue full force.


Chaotic Mom said...

Wow. Had no idea about the beds. VERY good to know that both of you are in good hands right now. God's hands, too. ;)

Heidi said...

This feels like Rob has turned another important corner. Getting those wounds closed up must bring relief to you and to his body. I'm so happy about his knee as well. I wanted to share with you a saying I keep very close to me and read a lot, like when the worrying can get to be too much. I think of you guys so much especially when I read it.
'Do not look forward to the changes and chances of this life in fear; rather look to them with full hope that as they arise, God will deliver you out of them. He has kept you hitherto, do you but hold fast to His dear hand, and He will lead you safely through all things and when you cannot stand, He will bear you in His arms. Do not look forward to what may happen tomorrow, the same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and everyday. Either he will shield you from suffering or He will give you strength to bear it. Be at peace then, and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.'
St. Francis de Sales

Thinking of you and appreciating your faith,

Liz said...

That's awesome!! I know you must love to see such postivie progress. I hope the swelling goes down quickly and you get to see more of your Rob this weekend. God bless.

Paul said...

So good to hear positive news again, all those prayers must be helping and what wonderful medical care Rob is getting. Your words about the Fisher House were very interesting to me as my son, an Air Force surgeon, wrote a book on his experience in Iraq and donated the profits to the Fisher House. It was heartwarming to see what it means to people and how much it is needed and I am very proud of him for any part he has played. It is through him that I got to your blog and I continue to follow Robs progress with great hope for him and your family. My son constantly spoke of the brave good men that he cared for in Iraq and that put their lives at risk for us. We are so grateful for men like Rob and the families behind them. Keep strong, things are moving in the right direction.

Christy and Brian McGarry said...

That's great that the surgery went well and both legs are closed. It's very nice that Col. Wesley stopped in! I'm sure that will mean a lot to Rob and it was probably nice for you to see him.
Continued prayers. God is good!

mike from topeka, ks said...

Dena and Rob:
The last couple of posts were great.
Responding by blinking his eyes is a great step forward.
Good news about both surgerys going well and being able to keep the knee.
I traveled yesterday for my work and was in the car for over 5 hours straight.
Had a lot of good alone time with Jesus.
Listened to and sang along with some good praise and worship music and had a lot of prayers.
Obviously, You both were in those prayers a lot.
Love Ya both as Brother and Sister in Christ

cary said...

Dena -

Great news, and the power of Prayer continues to amaze us.

We will continue to pray for CPT Rob, you, your family, the staff, and of course everyone in the web of prayer.

Wendell said...

Hey, The news sounds so encouraging and positive. We do have a awesome god and we are sure using him a lot lately!!! Know we are there with you in spirit...
All our love!!
-Uncle Wendell

Trish said...

WOW - wonderful news each day and making progress - and that is the KEY - you're right Dena - we are ALL praying, praying, and praying - A LOT!! Take care of yourself - we're all here for you.

Rome, Georgia

Anonymous said...

I've been reading your entries everyday and praying for Rob, you and your family. I'm amazed every single day at your words and how you are keeping this train moving forward and not slowing down. You are a remarkable woman, I'm not sure many people would be able to do what you have done. God did not promise us days without pain, what he promised us was that he would be there along side of us every step of the way. Take care of yourself and I wish you wonderful days ahead.
Sara (Davis) Tiedje - Shelby, NE

Mitch and Vicki Coffin said...

Thank you Dena for taking the time to update Rob's blog. You are so eloquent in explaining what is happening. We cannot fully imagine what this journey is like for Rob but we CAN keep the prayers coming. We respect that you have shared your feelings and concerns of having a family member so critical. It will be a blessing to have your dad and those little girls join you and Rob this week. God is so very good in helping us through times of trial. We are excited to hear your good reports and share in your praise of God for that as well.
Hugs and prayers,
Mitch and Vicki :-)

Anonymous said...

We were so happy to hear that the Second leg is down! You do such a wonderful job on your blog explaining need to write a book!! We continue to keep you, Rob, and the girls in our prayers. The first thing I do when I get home from work is check your blog for updates.
We tried getting in touch with Alan but will catch up with him later. Sounds like you will all be together this next week-----that is GREAT!!
Tell your Mom that we are thinking of her as well. God Bless you All! Love Don & Bonnie

Anonymous said...

Thank you and God bless you Dena for posting every day. Like many others, we cannot stop praying for or thinking about, Rob, you and the blessings the Lord gives you each day!

Teresa said...

From someone who completely supports Rob and his family, I am happy to hear things are better for them and we will keep praying!

Also, I moderate the comments on my blog. The comments go directly to my email and "I" decide if they should be published. I don't allow anonymous postings unless they include their name and/or are positive comments. I also don't allow mean and nasty comments, especially if they are anonymous. I don't see it as infringement of free speech because they can still leave their comments elsewhere. I consider myself the editor of my own newspaper by having a blog.

Anonymous said...

So glad Eric was able to see you....I know it meant so much to him.
Wonderful news on the leg!
God is indeed so wonderous and full of grace!
Keeping you and Rob in constant prayer...
Amy (Eric W. sis)

Cheryl and John Rongish said...

Dena, We walk by faith in this world, and I want you to know that your strength and love of God is an inspiration. We, the students and staff, at St. Mary's School in Ord, Nebraska have been praying for Rob and keeping you and all the family in our hearts and prayers. We will see some of the Hernbloom family next week and I'm sure they will have some updates for me. I read your blog daily, and I want to thank you for keeping us informed. John and I will continue to pray and trust that God is good, and that the new life you are now leading will only get better for you and Rob. God bless you always, Cheryl and John Rongish

Sarah said...

Hello ma'am. I know you don't know me, but I am praying for you and for Rob. My Dad is medically retired from the Air Force with rods and screws in his back. He shouldn't be able to walk or drive at all, yet you would never know anything was wrong by looking at him. God works mighty miracles, and I know for a fact your husband will be back to normal soon.

I've been following your blog since your first blog, and am incredibly inspired by how strong you are. Keep your head up, and be strong in the Lord and He will pull you and your husband through anything.

I'm extremely happy to see he's improving so well and so quickly! With that intense of injuries, he is recovering VERY quickly. God bless you and your family.


Andrea e Isabella said...

Dena i didn't have internet this 3 days but i just read right now the last updates, im so happy things are being great.. I still praying all days for Rob, you and the hole family.. You as i always said are an amazing person,God bless you Dane,

JihadGene said...

Prayin' thru the weekend and thanks for the much anticipated updates!

Our Prayers,
JG & Family

vangogh said...

continued prayers and moral support from peoria illinois. thank you all for your sacrifices for your country

Anonymous said...

Hi Dena,
I'm so glad the surgery went well today...such good news! We continue to pray for Rob and your family several times a day. Whenever I have a quiet moment I send another one up. I bet he'll make some wonderful progress with the girls there next week! Keep your spirits are an inspiration to all of us Army wives! Please let me know if you need anything at all...we're just down the road!
Love and prayers for continued healing,
Katie Kazor and Family

Anonymous said...

You have some former members of the Bulldog Brigade praying for him. I was on the Brigade staff and never met your husband back in 05/06, but the Thunderbolts earned everyone's pride and admiration. I don't usually read blogs, but somehow I followed a bunch of links today and found your site...I'll take it as a sign to pray more often and include Rob

Anonymous said...

"Beauty From Pain"

The lights go out all around me
One last candle to keep out the night
And then the darkness surrounds me
I know i'm alive but i feel like i've died
And all that's left is to accept that it's over
My dreams ran like sand through the fists that i made
I try to keep warm but i just grow colder
I feel like i'm slipping away

After all this has passed, i still will remain
After i've cried my last, there'll be beauty from pain
Though it won't be today,
Someday i'll hope again
And there'll be beauty from pain
You will bring beauty from my pain

My whole world is the pain inside me
The best i can do is just get through the day
When life before is only a memory
I'll wonder why God lets me walk through this place
And though i can't understand why this happened
I know that i will when i look back someday
And see how you've brought beauty from ashes
And made me as gold purified through these flames

After all this has passed, i still will remain
After i've cried my last, there'll be beauty from pain
Though it won't be today,
Someday i'll hope again
And there'll be beauty from pain
You will bring beauty from my pain

Here i am, at the end of me
Tryin to hold to what i can't see
I forgot how to hope
This night's been so long
I cling to Your promise
There will be a dawn

After all this has passed, i still will remain
After i've cried my last, there'll be beauty from pain
Though it won't be today,
Someday i'll hope again
And there'll be beauty from pain
You will bring beauty from my pain

Anonymous said...

Dena, I grew up across the street from your mom in Rising City. You come from an amazing family and I know you will gain tremendous support from them in the days to come. Even though I've never met you (well probably when you were little), I've become close to you during the past weeks. You are an amazing woman with great strength, faith and dignity. I was devastated when my mom emailed me yesterday with the news after she taught in Osceola for the day. I want to emphasize what your Aunt Nancy said awhile back. Even though we don't understand now, God's timing is perfect and all we can do is trust in that and lean completely on Him to see us through. Remember:

1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

2 My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1-2

The lyrics are from the song "Beauty From Pain" by Superchick. I hope you can find the it and I hope you can draw comfort from it. It's a beautiful song.