This site is for Tom Soper, and about Tom, for everyone who knows and loves him.
Returning from the airport, Tom was involved in a serious car accident whilst driving his cab-and-a-half at the corner of Glenara and Samora Machel Ave in Harare sometime between 9.30pm and 10pm on May 5 2009. A double-cab hit him side-on on the left (passenger) side of the vehicle.
Tom was freed from his car by emergency personnel and treated initially at Harare’s West End Hospital by Dr Simon Rothwell before being transported via air ambulance early Wednesday May 6th to Johannesburg’s Mill Park Netcare OR Tambo Trauma Centre.
Tom spent over 3 months in ICU, following his spinal fusion operation. His neck vertebrae were damaged, and his spinal cord was damaged in the C4/C5 area.
After a couple of attempts to wean off the ICU ventilator, Tom transferred to Muelmed Clinic in Pretoria to work with a multi-disciplinary team of experts on his condition in their brand new facility. Within a week Tom’s trachae had been removed and he was breathing on his own. An amazing combination of psychological and physiological approaches that also demonstrated once again how strong Tom’s resolve can be.
This web site has become so much more than it was intended to be at first – a central means to convey information, messages and advice. It has become an example of how communities come together in adversity; how geographical boundaries never diminish friendships; how families and friends cope with major life-changing events; how generosity triumphs over despair; how many people, including complete strangers, have the power to amaze you with their selflessness; and most importantly, how one good person has touched and inspired so many people through a lifetime of being kind and true, and how it is these qualities that define him – not one event in May.
As of 21 October, this site has been visited by over 6500 individuals, who have visited over 58 000 times, reading over 150 000 pages.
Please contribute to the site freely and often!