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A Family's Favorite Sport Almost Kills Child
LUDLOW FALLS -- Cameron Caldwell, his brother and his dad love to play catch in their front yard, in fact they play almost everyday, but this summer, a simple game of catch quickly went foul and nearly cost Cameron his life.
"From the time he was in a car seat walking he was out on the baseball field," said Gary Caldwell who coached his boys at an early age on how to make a good pitch.
But for Gary, there's one pitch he wishes never left his hand.
"Caleb threw me the ball one time, I caught it, turned and without paying too much attention I just hurried up and fired it to Cameron and he was adjusting his glove," said Gary. "The balls struck him behind the ear he fell to the ground."
Cameron went inside and his mother gave him some medicine and told him to lie down. There was no swelling so they thought he would be fine, but about an hour later his parents got the scare of a lifetime.
"She went back in there to check on him and he was convulsing and thrashing out-of-control.
"The drive to the hospital was one of the scariest things I've ever had to do," said his mom Brigit. "I think I drove 90 something the whole way just to get him there but when it's your baby and you see him in the backseat not responsive and eyes rolling in the back of their head you do what you have to do."
"The whole way there driving in the car he was trying to take his clothes off he was thrashing and trying to grab me and squeeze me he kind of lost control," said Gary.
Doctors diagnosed him with Epidural Hematoma which is bleeding and swelling in the brain. About 30 minutes after entering the hospital, and just minutes away from death, Cameron went into surgery.
"They were 50-50 on whether or not he would even make it through surgery so for the first night me and Bridget didn't even sleep," said Gary. "We sat there in the room just waiting wondering what life was going to be like what normal was going to be again we didn't know."
With 57 staples in Cameron's head doctors had no clue if Cameron would be physically or mentally handicapped and definitely didn't know if he would get to play baseball again.
"His eyes were so swollen shut he was black and blue," said Brigit. "Starting fresh had to learn the walk talk the himself brush his teeth."
For Gary, watching his son was especially tough.
"I am the one who threw it and if I paid a little bit more attention I would've seen he wasn't prepared to catch the ball so it was little bit hard on me," said Gary.
Within a few days Cameron was able to walk out of the hospital and within a few months was able to again play the sport he loves.
"To see him doing as well as he's doing; it's amazing to see him go through a such a traumatic experience and to see him come out of such a traumatic experience at almost 100%," said Brigit.
Maybe the coolest part of the story for Cameron, his favorite baseball player Starlin Castro who plays short stop for the Chicago Cubs got wind of his story and invited the entire Caldwell family to a Cubs game where Cameron got to shake hands with his favorite player.
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