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, December 12, 2011

Our Papaw, John Fleming, is in his new home.

Most of you know, our papaw John passed away this past Saturday and as my Aunt Christa said, he is in his new home, moved in at 7:36 with a clean bill of health and a brand new body.
We will miss him greatly.

John Fleming O'Cull moved on to his eternal reward on Dec. 10, 2011, surrounded by family, which he cherished.
He is survived by his wife Lois Marlene (White) O'Cull; they were married July 16, 1952. They have three children: John D. O'Cull (wife-Eugena) of Vanceburg, Christa Beth Little of Tollesboro, and Kimberly Sparks of Maysville. They have been actively involved in the lives of their six grandchildren: Chelcee, Lance, and Brock O'Cull and Bethany, Shelby, and Lucas Sparks. Step-grandchildren are Shauna (Larry) Spencer and Deah (Chris) Dunaway. Great-grandchildren include Maddie and Peyton Spencer, and Noah and Grant Dunaway.
His final breath, in this life, occurred in the Tollesboro home he and Marlene had occupied since Christmas 1953. This was also the home of his childhood - having been reared there by grandparents Leander and Matilda Applegate Trumbo, as well as his father, Charles Barnes O'Cull. This history unfolded because John's mother, Elizabeth Trumbo O'Cull, died three weeks following his birth on Dec. 27, 1928. Charlie Barnes remarried Virginia McCarrihan. She then was step-mother to John, and later grandmother to John and Marlene's children.
After graduating Tollesboro High School, O'Cull continued his education at Morehead Teachers College/Morehead State University where he received his Bachelors and Masters Degree, then a Rank I and Principal Certification. His 42-year career, in the Lewis County Schools included teaching math at Tollesboro High School, then serving as principal of Garrison Elementary (10 years), Lewis County Central (seven years), Tollesboro High (two years), and Tollesboro Elementary (nine years).
John served as elder in the Plumville Church of Christ where he and Marlene have been members since 1998. Previously, he had served in leadership at Tollesboro Christian Church. Additionally, he was a 60-year Mason and was a member of the Tollesboro St. Mary's Lodge No. 240.
Marlene and the rest of the family wish to celebrate John's life, his commitment to God, and his loving kindness during a visitation to be held in the Tollesboro Christian Church on Tuesday, Dec. 13, 5-8 p.m.
Services will be the following day at 11 a.m., also at Tollesboro Christian; visitation also Wednesday from 8 a.m. until time of service.
Interment will follow in Lewis County Memory Gardens.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Lance O'Cull Trust, Bank of Maysville, 20 West Second Street, Maysville, 41056.
Barbour and Son Funeral Home is assisting the family.

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  1. So sorry to hear about your Grandpa! Praying for the strength you and your family need at this time!

  2. I was so sorry to hear about John this morning. May God continue to hold your family in His care. I like Christa's statement. Heaven is richer by one now. Prayers for everyone.


  3. Strength and peace to all of you. Mr. O'Cull was a wonderful man and I know how much you will miss him. Our prayers continue for all of your family, and especially for Lance. Love and hugs to all.