The latest update on Austin Hatch from the Hatch family on the CaringBridge page is very encouraging:
Saturday July 2
Austin had another good and restful night. The concern regarding brain swelling has subsided and his condition continues to improve. We are encouraged by Austin's response to the excellent medical care he is receiving, a testament to his prior athletic training regimen. We will keep all of you posted with any meaningful changes in his condition.
God bless you all.
An encouraging update on Austin Hatch was recently posted on his CaringBridge page:
Friday July 1st
First of all, we would like to thank all of the press who have given the family space and time to rest and focus on Austin. We are encouraged by the progress Austin has made in this first week. He has remained stable, and notable improvements include movement to withdraw from pain and improved breathing function. Doctors have begun the gradual process of reducing his medications. As he slowly begins the "waking up" process, we ask for your continued prayers, and are grateful for the outpouring of love and support for Austin and the entire extended Hatch Family.
Also, the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel reported that a memorial service will be held next Wednesday for his father and stepmother.
Press release posted at mgoblue.com:
Coach Beilein Issues Letter to U-M Fans, Supporters Regarding Hatch Family
June 28, 2011
To All Fans and Supporters of Michigan Athletics,
Our basketball program and the Michigan community were saddened to hear about the tragedy that affected the Hatch family late Friday evening. Austin needs as much support right now as possible and he continues to be in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
We are grateful that the NCAA has relaxed some of the contact restrictions currently in place to accommodate this unique set of circumstances for our coaches. We appreciate that they and Big Ten office are working with us throughout this situation. Both groups have been in communication with our compliance office and continue to provide valuable insight on a daily basis.
The outpouring of support from our Michigan faithful, coaches, administrators and fans across the country has been overwhelming. We are thankful for all the support that has been offered to the Hatch family. We appreciate that the NCAA will continue to work with us and act in the best interest of everyone involved.
Thanks for your continued prayers for Austin and the Hatch family.
For those who would like to send a note of support, the family has requested all well-wishers use the website -- http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/AustinHatch
Indiana's News Center has an item—Austin Hatch Still in a Coma but Sources Are Optimistic—that includes a statement from the Hatch family:
Munson Medical Center released the following statement on behalf of the Hatch family spokesperson:
“Austin remains in critical condition but is recovering. We ask that everyone respect our family’s privacy during this time of grief. We appreciate the prayers, concerns, and outpouring of sympathy. Expressions of support for Austin and the family may be directed to www.caringbridge.org/visit/AustinHatch.”
There is additional optimistic news in the article:
Sources say Austin's still in the medically induced coma doctor’s put him in after the plane crash. They say doctors are waiting on results of a CT Scan.
But sources tell us they have observed movement in all four of Austin’s extremities and they feel it's a positive sign.
. . .
"I'm sure he will be in a coma for a few more days as they continue to work on him. But they think he's out of the woods. They didn't know initially if he was going to make it but I think he will make it now and we're praising God for that," said [Blackhawk Teaching Pastor Steve] Webster.
PLEASE NOTE: As I mentioned in the earlier thread, from what Sam Webb and Ira Weintraub said on WTKA this morning, Michigan fans need to be careful about reaching out to Austin—perhaps even through that web page the family has set up. For example, if you wanted to send a card to him, they said you should be careful not to indicate any connection to Michigan, such as saying "looking forward to seeing you in Ann Arbor" or something like that. Even saying something like "Go Blue!" might be problematic. As I recall from the show, Ira had talked to Tom Wywrot at U-M, who had gotten some clarification on this issue from the NCAA. If anyone has heard anything further on what is and is not allowed, please post it here, and I'll be glad to revise this.
A very insightful article on Austin, his prognosis and his support system within his family and school.
As always, our thoughts and prayers are with you, Austin.
Hoops player's youth, strength are pluses as he emerges from coma.
Today marks the start of recovery for Canterbury High School basketball standout Austin Hatch. He will be brought out of the medically induced coma he was placed in after his involvement in a single-engine plane crash Friday evening in Charlevoix, Mich.
“They’re waiting for the brain swelling to go down,” Dr. G. David Bojrab told The Associated Press. “He has bruising to the brain, but there’s no structural damage as far as they can tell right now, so they’re hoping that’s a good sign and he’ll have a better recovery or a full recovery.”
There are many questions regarding Austin’s future. But Kline isn’t worried about the athletic future of his star player.
“If he never plays basketball again,” Kline said, “then he’ll just become the best orthopedic surgeon he can become. He’s going to persevere because he knows what he wants in life. He has goals and a road map to follow in achieving those goals.”
Austin and his father grew closer since the 2003 plane crash.
Earlier this month, Austin and his father shared one of the most special days of their lives when the 6-foot-6, 214-pound forward received and accepted a basketball scholarship offer from the University of Michigan, the alma mater of his parents.
“There’s something special about Michigan,” Hatch told The News-Sentinel at the time. “I fell in love with Michigan the first time I visited.”
Whether Austin eventually wears the maize-and-blue two years from now remains to be seen.
“He’s a very mature, bright 16-year-old kid, and he has a great future ahead of him,” Bowersock said. We’re just focused right now on Austin getting well.”