The chicken spaghetti had just been placed on the dinner table when Jennifer Trowbridge got the phone call no parent wants.
“I almost didn’t answer the phone since we were about to eat,” Trowbridge said. “But something told me to answer it since he doesn’t call me often.”
The voice on the other line quickly asked Trowbridge where she was and if she’s received any calls about her son, Joshua Prosise. When she said no, he told her about the accident.
“He recognized him when they [Guardian EMS] brought him in,” Trowbridge said. “He didn’t have any form of identification on him. If it wasn’t for my friend, I have no idea when I would have found out about the accident.”
Working as an EMT field for 12 years, Trowbridge has responded to a number of accidents and was scared to death about her son’s condition.
“My first thoughts where was he alive,” Trowbridge said. “Once I saw the photos from the accident, I thought how did any of them survive?”
Within minutes, Trowbridge was one her way to Brownwood Regional Medical Center with her other sons, Mason and Ray, and their father Nathan Prosise, who had called her earlier when he heard the accident on his scanner.
“He’s on the Brookesmith VFD and when he heard the accident he called me to check to see if Ray was with me,” Trowbridge said. “Neither of us thought Josh would be involved in the accident.”
Start of a long night
From the moment she received the phone call to the instant she arrived at BRMC, some of the details remain fuzzy in her mind.
“Only thing I remember was walking through the ER doors,” Trowbridge said. “I just wanted to make sure he was alive.”
Upon arrival, she discovered the extent of Joshua Prosise’s injuries, which included a fractured neck on his C-2, a collapsed left lung, several broken ribs and a lacerated liver, kidney and spleen along with several cuts and abrasions.
“Of all of his injuries, the neck fracture worried me the most,” Trowbridge said. “He’s very lucky that he didn’t need to have any surgeries — just a chest tube.”
Once his test results were back, BRMC prepared him for transport via AirEvac to Hendricks Medical Center. After the flight nurses loaded him into the helicopter, Trowbridge started the drive to Abilene, which she drove to help keep her mind busy.
“I function better if I keep my mind busy,” Trowbridge said. “If I wasn’t driving, I know I would have fallen apart.”
The flight nurses with AirEvac helped ease her nerves as they sent updates via text messages throughout the 20-minute flight and right before landing at the hospital.
“The nurses and doctors where amazing,” Trowbridge said. “I could not of asked for better care from any of them.”
Joshua Prosise remained in the pediatric critical care unit for 6 days before getting released. With his injuries, he had to undergo physical therapy to help him walk and get around with a neck brace, which he was required to wear for eight weeks.
Besides being grateful for her son’s recovery, Trowbridge was grateful to have a support system in place to help her through the accident, which included her family, friends and her co-workers from Heart of Texas EMS.
“They were so supportive of me and let me take all of the time I needed to be with him during his recovery,” Trowbridge said. “I’ve very grateful to work for such great people.”
Revisiting the accident
Joshua Prosise was hanging out with three friends on Sept. 12 when the car they were in rolled on County Round 233 after the driver lost control of the car after hitting a dip at a high speed.
“Everything happened so fast,” Joshua Prosise said. “I could barely grasp what was going on but I remember almost everything.”
Joshua Prosise remembers waking up in the middle of County Road 233 in pain. According to Trowbridge, both first responders and the emergency room doctors believe he was ejected from the vehicle due to the injuries he sustained.
“I wasn’t worried about my injuries,” Joshua Prosise said. “The only thing I thought was my mom is going to kill me when she finds out.”
Joshua Prosise recalls sharing his concern with Colten Tibbitts, who he remembers as being the first person on the scene.
“I’ve always been involved in helping others,” Tibbitts said. “It’s all about helping your neighbors.”
Ten days after the accident, Joshua Prosise insisted on returning to the scene of the accident despite his mother’s concerns.
“It brought back memories from that day,” Joshua Prosise said. “I remembered where and how I was lying on the down. It was more of a shock than it was scary.”
Trowbridge added, “It was very difficult to go to the site. I didn’t want to go but he wanted to go. It was very emotional time for all of us.”
Almost three months after the accident, Joshua Prosise remains on limited activity while his neck fracture continues to heal.
“From the grace of God he has no deficits from this injuries,” Trowbridge said. “We still have to do follow ups with his doctors due to the internal injuries but all are healing well.
“He definitely had someone watching over him that day.
“No words can ever describe how thankful I am for still having him here with me.”