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.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

march madness

March is always a little hectic in my life. Lots of basketball and almost everyone in my family celebrates a birthday.  Its a good time.

This March is no different.
Mom had a birthday last Thursday. My dad is celebrating his today. Brock will be 23 tomorrow, along with Peyton turning 9. Lance will be 26 on Friday. My Aunt Christa celebrates on Saturday and Shauna at the end of this month. Its crazy. I'm usually out of money by the end of March and definitely sick of birthday cake. (Notice that I didn't include ages of those who are older than me :))
Our cousin, Bopper Stenzel was voted 10th region Player of the Year. He plays for George Rogers Clark, and they will be playing in the state tournament next week. GO CARDS!

For those of you reading, who aren't in Kentucky, the weather is crazy!
Last Friday, tornados ripped through our state and demolished several small towns. I was in a hallway for 2 hours during a tornado warning while at school. My good friend Kayla lost her car and her parents home in Frenchburg. Counties south of Morehead, which is where I work, were leveled. Unfortunately, not only were homes and business destroyed, but lives were lost.
On Monday, we had snow - 6 inches in some places. This was taken in Morgan Co, by my good friend, Brandon Beasley.
Please keep the people of Morgan and Magoffin County in your thoughts and prayers. 

Today, its 70 degrees. Crazy.

ok, lets see, what else is happening. Oh yeah, Lance is back in Atlanta!
Yay! we are pretty excited. He headed out on Saturday, spent the night in Knoxville, and got to meet our cousin, Shelby for breakfast on Sunday morning at Cracker Barrel.

On Monday morning, he began the grueling admission process. Several nurses and therapists that he had over a year ago came in to see him. And of course, they were thoroughly impressed with his progress. His new doctor immediately began assessing and tweaking his medications. The therapist team evaluated to see what to try next on the left leg. Its improved greatly in the past couple months. But still needs work. They have decided to try an intrathecal baclofen pump to treat the spasticity. As always, we are completely amazed with The Shepherd Center, the hope that you feel as soon as you walk in the door, and the intensity of the program itself.
When Lance was discharged from this facility last year, it was with the intent to come back as soon as he was ready. Even though we see huge improvements in Lance's progress, its still surreal that he has advanced out of his 'comatose' state and is now ready to try whatever they throw at him.
It a humbling experience to be a part of.

Here is a picture of myself and my handsome brothers on Saturday, before he left for Georgia.


  1. You all look good. Praise God for Lance's advancement and the opportunity to go back to Shephardsville! Praying for you all!! Love, the McArtors