Thanks to Governor Jerry Brown and The California Department of Rehabilitation. (DOR), the multi-faceted professional services of Chris Welke are available at no cost to your company, in fact, the state will slice two-and-a-half G’s off your taxes too. If you are not aware, Welke was severely injured in an accident Nov. 2012. An Infinity Q45 doing 45mph did not see Welke as he crossed Camino De Los Mares in a crosswalk, pulverizing his right leg, smashing out seven teeth, breaking his jaw in three places, slicing his cheek and slitting his throat.
Despite the critical injury and years of surgery, Welke identifies as “disabled” in the legal sense only. He does not collect SSI. He works small contract jobs and the state wishes to reward him and any company willing to take him on for a no-risk trial. The state will pay an hourly (up to $15/hr and 40hrs/wk) plus all benefits. Over $100,000 was spent to fully restore his face, neck, jaw and teeth, paid for by Welke himself. The leg is in the millions, priceless really…. it is one-of-a-kind, the cost courtesy of his genius orthopedic surgeon Dr. Ken Wilkins and generous grants from The Federal Government of The United States of America. Welke has no brain damage…. other than kind of a “Sgt. Barnes,” look, you’d have no way to tell an accident ever happened unless you asked and he was willing to tell you. When the 90 days are up, your company can hire Mr. Welke or send him back to the State…we think you’ll want to keep him though. Contact the DOR through the link provided or the Orange County office…
2002 East McFadden Avenue , Suite 100
Santa Ana, CA 92705-4767
….for more info or this Web site. Happy New Year. Services listed:
Welke was hit just outside the SC Hospital, but his shattered leg severed the femoral artery and the rearview mirror of the car had broken and slit his throat. He was bleeding out fast and Saddleback Hospital is not equipped to handle such trauma. Heroics of the OCFD Paramedics tranfused his blood en route to Mission Trauma, 8 miles away. Following three days on life support. The attending orthopedic surgeon ordered the right leg ampuated above the knee. In 2012, AMA guidelines stated that under Welke’s extreme condition, it was not necessary to obtain his consent to remove the leg.
That’s not what happened though….
A young, brilliant surgeon named Dr. Ken Wilkins reviewd the work order, and looked at Welke, who was clearly young, in outstanding shape physically…and in a clinically-induced coma initiated by the attending. Wilkins brought Welke out of the coma …
“You see this? This an order for me to amputate your right leg above the knee. My boss thinks it’s a lost cause…”
Welke looked down to see that though heavily bandaged … he was still whole.
“I don’t like my boss…he’s old and out-of-touch. I don’t really like taking orders from people who aren’t as smart or educated as I am.”
That got Welke’s attention, he never liked being told what to do by someone he considered inferior to the task at-hand.
“Are you a gambling man, Chris?”
“[now rambling]…y..yeah…but I only place a bet if I think I’ve got a good chance to win. I play blackjack cuz I can count…I’ll bet on a game or a horsey if I get some insider info…you won’t find me at a poker table cuz I’m a terrible liar…..no slots; ever…”
“Ok then. There’s a 70 percent chance I can save your leg. A 30 percent chance you’ll have no feeling below the knee…I want to try something on you as an experiment. It’s going to be about eight surgeries, you’ll be here with me in hospital for about five weeks. I can use some existing parts and design the rest in AutoCAD…had this happened in 2011, I’d be following the work order, but we’ve made huge advances this year..I think I can save it. When all is said and done, it’s coin-toss that your body will reject it and I’ll STILL have to amputate…”
Welke was fully-awake now…running the numbers in his head…probabilities…when Wilkins was done, he estimated that that saving the leg was appx. 60 percent, WALKING on the other hand, sounded decidedly lower… “…so Chris, would you place that bet?”
Welke made a gesture across his gown, as if pushing a large pile of chips forward.
They looked at each other severely. Then both smiled. Dr. Wilkins tore the work order to shreds, erased parts of Welke’s chart and added a slew of new orders, mainly to take him out of the ICU ASAP and xfer him to Trauma for an extended stay.
coming soon; pt 2 – XFIX – the external fixator.
pt 3. Design – Wilkins designs a custom 1/2-femur, knee, tib/fib, ankle and part of a foot in AutoCAD and orders the materials needed to be custom manufactured from various medical device manufacturers.
pt 4. Install – Wilkins uses gold to fuse his 1/2 femur-knee-tib-fib-ankle system to what wasn’t pulverized in the accident, Welke is splayed out in the main operating theatre prone for 12 hours, taken down so deep that machines are breathing and pumping his blood for him…and has a SECOND near-death exp.
pt 5. Recovery – Welke awakens from the procedure to extreme pain and panic with BP in the red zone and rising. Wilkins again bends rules and breaks protocol to save him, before returning the the theatre to do a “double knee-replacement on some old lady.”
pt.6. SE – starts ok…one week in staf strikes, Wilkins prescribes a 120 day battery of Cipro, an Anthrax drug given only to critical government/military personnel post 9/11 in the event of a biological attack.
pt.7. Walkin’ – Wilkins pays out-of-pocket to send Welke to the same PTs used by the California Angels.
pt.8. Classified-the state judiciary and executive label Welke a “Category I” – the highest level of physical disability according to state law.
pt.9. Victory – Welke walks. Then runs.
pt.10 Denouement – Welke decides not to identify as “disabled” any longer, though he cannot shake the legal definition.