Live the Lion was created in an attempt to keep everyone up to date on Lance O'Cull and his road to recovery.

Lance was involved in a car accident near Morehead, Kentucky about 30 miles from where we grew up Thanksgiving weekend of 2010. He was airlifted from the scene of the accident to UK Medical Center in Lexington. The doctors told us that they could fix everything below the neck, but his brain was in God's hands. On December 22, after multiple surgeries, Lance was transferred to The Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia for an intense rehabilitation program.

It was there that Lance began to gradually emerge from a coma. Lance was discharged to home, in Vanceburg on February 17th, to continue his therapy with family.

On March 10th, Lance's 25th birthday, he stood on his feet for the first time in 103 days, with lots of help. On May 11th, Lance was accepted into Cardinal Hill's brain injury unit. There he impressed and amazed our family and friends, as well as his therapists through the progress he made everyday.

Between September 2011 and April of 2012, Lance was back and forth between Cardinal Hill's inpatient program and Shepherd Center's inpatient and outpatient program. He has had a couple minor surgeries to enhance his healing and a baclofen pump inserted to help with the tone in his body.

For the past year, Lance is back in Lewis County splitting his time with both parents. He continues to travel to Ashland 3 times a week and Lexington once a week. He is learning to walk again and we couldn't be more thrilled.

It hasn't been easy, Lance has had some setbacks and tears still fall. But he is up and running this marathon. And we are all running right along beside him.

Most of the blog entries have been made by myself, Chelcee, the big sister, Brock, our baby brother, and Dr. Johnny, our dad. Our goal is for Lance to finish this blog as soon as he is able.

God has been with Lance and our entire family, giving us strength. We give Him the Glory. He is the God of Miracles.


Monday, January 17, 2011

Busy Monday at Shepherd Center

     Lance has had a busy day.  The hospital was buzzing early this morning because it was moving day.  The second floor renovations are complete(all with donated dollars) and all patients on third floor were given new occupancy in the bright and modern rooms.  Lance room number is now 252.
     Therapy sessions were fun today as Lance accomplished new tasks.  During occupational therapy, he looked at a toothbrush, it was placed in his hand, and then ............opened his mouth as he brought toothbrush close to his mouth.  Gena and I looked at each other with our mouths hanging wide open, right before we started crying tears of joy. 
     The speech therapist raised a glass of water to his mouth and he pulled water through a straw and swallowed.  While these may seem like small things to most of us, these are huge developments for a man who has been injured like Lance and spent the last 50 days in comatose/minimally conscious state.
     It has been a good day and we rejoice in it because it is a day that  the Lord has made.  We also give praise to God for the healing that we see day-to-day.  Our continual prayer is that Lance's healing will bring glory to God.  One take-home I have had from the past seven weeks is that I, as God's creation, should reflect his glory each and every day......whether I am alive and well and at my best or when I'm tired or sick or old (that's all relative) or just not on my A game or ...dying.
     Yes, it seems that death can in fact bring ultimate glory to God.  Think of how we feel at a funeral of one who died in Christ; names of some of my heroes - Lyda Brayfield,  Lottie Johnson,  Thelma Irwin, Tom Bowman, Eva Bivens, and more recently MissVirginia Cooper - come to my mind as examples of individuals who just lived each day in faith.  They were not heroes in the eyes of the world but God knew their hearts, their kindness, and that they lived in His grace and just wanted His glory to be reflected.  The comfort felt in those circumstances....that is the type of solace that each of us want others to feel when the date is set for our funeral.  There are many others I could have named that have left me a legacy of fond memories - people that helped me, loved me, and pointed me in the right direction....toward the cross of Christ.
     Paul, in 1Timothy 1:14 begins, "And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.  This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.  However, for this reason I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show all longsuffering, as a pattern to those who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life.  NOW TO THE KING ETERNAL, IMMORTAL, INVISIBLE, TO GOD WHO ALONE IS WISE, BE HONOR AND GLORY FOREVER AND EVER. AMEN."  I've told you my prayer for Lance; I have a prayer for you tonight.  "God I thank you for your grace.  I pray that in my life or through my death, people would give You  glory and honor.  I am thankful for each person who follows Lance's life; I pray that each reader would consider Your grace and realize it is Your gift to them.  In Jesus Name, Amen."

I will close tonight with a Martin Luther King quote; now there's a man who left us a legacy.  Marilyn Scaggs shared this in an email to Lance today:
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. - MLK



  1. I tear up every time I read an update. I can't help to think of all the good things God does for us. Lance is making improvements everyday. I tell of the first time I meet Lance. Tell of his journey since the wreck and share updates with friends. Lance and his family are in my prayers and in the prayers of many here in Berea. I pray that he continues to make improvements and that his family stays strong throughout his journey of healing.

    Brock, Lance and I were in marching band together. I'll never forget the times on the band bus singing "Oh I guess it would be nice..."

  2. I agree with Alicia only I bawl everytime. I love to read the updates. They are so inspiring as is your family and yourself. I have no doubt that God is proud of his creations, The O'Culls.
    Continued prayers~Glenda