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 31, 2011

Weekend Update

It is great to be back in Atlanta with Lance.  Gena and I arrived Sarurday morning after leaving Vanceburg at 5:00PM Friday following a work day which started slow because of snow.  The snow did enable other Georgia visitors to depart early due to cancellation of school.  Chelcee, Ben Harrison, and Grandma Betty left early and arrived first. Giving chase were Granny Marlene and Papaw John being escorted by Shauna and Madelyn Spencer.  Lance was tired after a busy week so visits were brief.  Earlier that day he had ridden the FES bike again and did well, riding 22 minutes, doing much of the pedaling on his own; even the e-stimulation was turned off for most of this ride.  If I don't start decreasing my intake of all this wonderful food that has been prepared / given AND increasing my exercise levels,  I will not be able to keep up with him.

He also received first muscle injections of Botox - prescribed to combat muscle tension.  It will take 5-7 days before we see the maximum effect of these injections. 

Granny Betty & Jill departed for Kentucky Saturday morning.  Soon after they left, we had a wonderful visit from Terry Stork, a friend of Larry and Connie Bryant.  He inspired us with scripture and prayer.  As part of his prayer, he quoted Judges 5, "Wake up, Wake up, Break out in song!  Arise Barak(Lance)."   I don't know how many prayer circles you have been involved in - but if you get a chance, gather with family and friends around a loved one in a wheel chair and call on God for His help and strength.  Join hands with each other and lay your hands on the patient.  It not only is a plea for God's help, but it acknowledges Him as the Healer, the Source of all things good, Almighty God, Our Creator.  It is healing for the one that is being lifted in prayer but also serves as wonderful medicine for all in the group.

Shauna used her training and provided Lance some occupational therapy in the afternoon, even though she is not on the Shepherd Center staff.  They have given us exercises to help loosen his arms/shoulders - she rendered them in a professional way.  Papaw John and Granny Marlene enjoyed their visit; it was the first Shepherd center visit for all three grandparents.  A little trip to mall for the three generations of girls - Gena, Shauna, and Madelyn - were part of the afternoon.  Overall, Lance still seemed tired today and rested most of the day.

That brings us to Sunday; it has now been 9 weeks since Lance's accident.  This was a special Sunday because it was his first time outside since the Sunday afternoon after Thanksgiving(other than ambulance transfers).  The Atlanta weather was blue skies and 70 degrees.  We went to the first floor and into a garden which lies between the hospital and Peachtree Boulevard.  For thirty minutes we slowly moved around to different places in the garden.  He seemed to enjoy the fresh air and the sunshine.  We all anxiously await his first words; I keep wondering what he is thinking.....................


(PS by Chelcee: I've had lots of questions about bracelets and tshirts...
Live the Lion bracelets and Dance for Lance t-shirts will be available at the zumbathon on Saturday)


  1. Keep up the good work, Lance. Enjoy that 70 degree weather...back here in Kentucky that sounds fantastic.

  2. So wonderful that Lance got to go out side a breath of fresh air is always wonderful! I am so excited about the zumbathon Saturday! Gonna be lots of Lance supporters there what a wonderful way for friends, family and community to show their support for such a fine young man and his family. For those who cannot attend I plan on taking pictures so you can at least see some of it. Lance keep up the good work you have a multitude in your corner!

  3. It's February 1, 2011 and I am always excited to see another February!!! Ten years ago this month I was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer! I awaited ten days on test results. During the days after my diagnoses I was in a rocking chair during a prayer circle and the laying on of hands and calling upon God for my healing! I am awaiting to hear about Lance's first words myself as I still believe in God's power and healing. My family and I pray daily for Lance's healing and care of his family. We love hearing the good news!! Enjoy the SONshine of God's love!