Aaron Haskins

Aaron Haskins has spent his life “sprinting a marathon.” One December day, Aaron entered his biggest race yet when he fell off a 20-foot ladder. The fall left Aaron with multiple brain bleeds and several skull fractures, requiring emergency surgery. His wife, Melanie, was told he wouldn’t survive. The doctors were so certain of his impending death, they even allowed Melanie to remain by his side, despite COVID visitation restrictions.

But Aaron had other plans. The first night passed. Then another. And then one more. Alone by Aaron’s bedside, Melanie was the only non-staff member in the ICU. After several days the staff told Melanie she would no longer be able to stay by his side.

That’s when Aaron started to wake up.

Day-by-day, from that point on, Aaron began to slowly progress in his recovery. Hope was renewed and Aaron’s doctors referred him to the neuro recovery program at Vibra Specialty Hospital of Portland.

At Vibra, Aaron began sprinting a new marathon. He arrived unable to move his extremities or follow commands. But on his second day working with the neuro recovery team, Aaron began to open his eyes on command. Soon after, he began moving his extremities. Each day thereafter, Aaron made impressive gains.

Aaron’s type of brain injury allowed for aggressive rehabilitation. “The news that I didn’t have to try to hold him back was a shining moment for me because I have never been able to hold Aaron back,” Melanie shared with the neuro recovery team. Aaron recalls the day when Faith, his physical therapist, pushed him beyond his limits. “I did 90 squats today. I kept telling her I was tired and wanted to quit, and she told me no. So I kept going. Afterward, she told me she could not have done that many.”

“We have been so overwhelmed by all the support we have received,” Melanie shared. “There has been such an outpouring of love and help and it’s all coming back to Aaron full circle. He’s the guy that will fix your car at two o’clock in the morning when you’re stuck and now we have all these people helping him. It’s been wonderful!”

Aaron and Melanie set a goal for him to be strong enough to go on their dream hunting trip to Montana in the fall with their sons and extended family. Aaron is well on his way to sprinting his next marathon.