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Family of patient transported from Enterprise to Nashville speaks

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 6:50 PM CDT
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ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WTVY) - A few days ago, we brought you a story about an enterprise man being transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

After the battle with pneumonia, Lee Rykard suffered a mild heart attack over Labor Day weekend and with nowhere to go.

“They told him at that time, there are no beds here that we can move you to, for a cardiologist to look at you. There’s no beds, se there’s no beds at flowers, they’re all filled,” said LeAnne Rykard, Lee’s daughter.

The Rykard family was told 12 of the 13 beds at Medical Center Enterprise were filled with COVID-19 patients.

The next closest hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, Lee’s daughter, LeAnne was headed to the hospital to say goodbye to her dad.

“That’s when they got a call and said Vanderbilt has a bed,” said LeAnne Rykard.

Enterprise Rescue made the transport from Medical Center Enterprise to Vanderbilt University Medical Center over the labor day weekend.

“The paramedic who is in the back I think his name is Darren, called my mom on his cell phone and handed the phone to my dad so my dad could talk to him on the way up there,” said LeAnne. “My mom was, I think, a little bit in shock.”

LeAnne was concerned that was the last time she was going to see her dad alive.

“I didn’t think he was coming home, I didn’t,” LeAnne continued. “I thought he was gone forever. I thought that that would be the last time I kissed my daddy on his forehead.”

After a week of care in Nashville, Lee thankfully returned home to his family but the scare of LeAnne almost losing her father leaves her with one message.

“Get the vaccine just like [you] get the flu shot.”

I did speak with LeAnne’s mother and father, and he’s been home several days now and slowly recovering.

Copyright 2021 WTVY. All rights reserved.

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