Update 10:05 p.m…..We are going to the hospital in a few minutes.

Update 5:15 p.m….Beth is still having some pain. I just talked to our youth/music minister’s wife, who has been an ER charge nurse for years, and she said it does sound to her like the antibiotics for the respiratory infection may have been keeping appendicitis or some other infection under control, and now that she is off of them, it’s flaring back up. We are still waiting a little while before we decide to go to the hospital.

We are back to square one. Bethany has all the abdominal pain again and did not go to work this morning. She is asleep right now, but depending on how she feels when she wakes up, we may go to the emergency room. It seems now that she has finished the antibiotics and steroids for her respiratory infection, the pain is returning full-force. Which tells me she has an infection that was helped by the meds, but now is regathering its strength.

I heard from my sister who works at NASA. She knew the man who was killed yesterday and just spoke with him on the phone on Thursday. She knows the woman who was held hostage. Her last name is Crenshaw and she said they have joked many times about the possibility we are related. Our great-grandmother was a Crenshaw.  My sister, aunt and cousin all work in buildings right across the street from where the gunman was. My nephew works down the street a short distance.

all gave some

This was yesterday here in Deer Park:

April 21, 2007, 1:47AM
Deer Park mourns a hometown hero
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle 

More than 1,500 flag-bearing residents lined the streets of Deer Park on Friday to pay their respects to Army Sgt. Robert Matthew McDowell, who was killed in Iraq this month.

McDowell, 30, was remembered as a hero who had a made-for-Hollywood smile.

“A fallen soldier deserves our highest respect and honor,” the Rev. Tony Castro said during a memorial service at St. Hyacinth Catholic Church.

In front of the altar stood a pillar with a folded American flag, and off to the side was a large portrait of McDowell surrounded by a spray of yellow roses. At the end of the service, the American flag was presented to McDowell’s mother.

The 300 or so people who attended the Mass in McDowell’s honor walked past a table filled with pictures of McDowell from birth and childhood to his marriage. One photo showed a smiling McDowell holding his son, who was born this year.

McDowell, known to his family and friends as Matt, was serving in Iraq when his son was born but had a leave last month that allowed him to visit with his wife, Daniella, and their new baby.

McDowell left his Fort Drum, N.Y., base to return to Iraq on March 23 and died April 1 when an improvised device exploded near his vehicle. Also killed were Staff Sgt. David A. Mejias, 26, of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Staff Sgt. Eric R. Vick, 25, of Spring Hope, N.C., and Spc. William G. Bowling, 24, of Beattyville, Ky.

“He was a happy-go-lucky guy that was always there to lend a helping hand and to offer a friendly smile. His death has left his family and friends in shock, and we will always miss Matt,” said his sister-in-law, Stacey McDowell.

Matt McDowell, a 1996 Deer Park High graduate, had been in the Army for nearly 10 years. He was assigned to the 2nd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division in Fort Drum and was on his second tour of duty to Iraq.

Friday, residents of Deer Park lined up along Center Street — the main artery through town — waiting for McDowell’s family to pass en route to St. Hyacinth. The family was escorted by Deer Park police as well as the motorcycle Patriot Guard Riders.

World War II veteran Bill Ervin said he was not surprised by the overwhelming support extended the McDowell family.

“Lots of people don’t seem to worry about it and aren’t interested (in the war) but not here in Deer Park,” the 86-year-old said as he held a large pole with an American flag.

Aside from his wife and son, McDowell is survived by a 6-year-old daughter and his parents. His mother and stepfather live in Deer Park; his father lives in Mobile, Ala. Also surviving him are a brother, Michael, of Pearland, and other relatives.

A memorial fund for McDowell’s family was set up at Bank of America. Donations may be made to the Matthew McDowell Memorial Fund, c/o Bank Of America, 5803 Fairmont Pkwy., Pasadena, TX 77505.

Matt McDowell

In this recent but undated photo provided by his father, U.S. Army Spc. Robert Matthew McDowell holds his newborn son, Nathan. McDowell, son of Robert Kim McDowell of Mobile, was among four soldiers killed Sunday, April 1, when an explosive detonated near their vehicle in Baghdad, Iraq.

  Center Street flags

Jo Johnson lines up along Center Street on Friday morning in Deer Park, along with a crowd of others holding flags honoring Army Sgt. Robert Matthew McDowell. Sgt. McDowell was killed on April 1, 2007, in Baghdad.

Patriot Guard Riders



8 thoughts on “

  1. I wouldn’t wait… if it’s really an appendicitis, she really needs to be seen sooner rather than later. It’s much easier to excise an intact appendix than a ruptured one, and with a LOT less risk as well. I know it sucks to wait in the ER, but maybe if you go in now you’ll avoid all those late-night weekend drunk-drivers coming in! I hope she feels better. FWIW they thought I had an appendicitis in 8th grade, never found anything…. then years and years later when I was finally dianosed as having PCOS, they realized it was a ruptured cyst. RYC: I won’t be high risk, so I probably will see a regular OB (I see a regular OB now), but I am making sure to deliver in a hopsital with a Level III NICU just incase.

  2. Hi, Lauryn…..She has had ovarian cysts already because of the PCOS that every woman in my family seems to inherit. But she said this feels really different than any she has ever had. Around here it’s not so much the drunk drivers on the weekends. It’s just all the parents taking their snotty nosed kids in because they don’t have insurance and they know the hospital can’t refuse them. So it’s nothing to have a 12-16 hour wait in the ER, unless you have something really life threatening.

  3. Oh, and I thought maybe they would consider you high risk now. I’m glad you’ll be at a hospital with a level III NICU. When Rachel was born, they had to transport her from our hospital to Texas Children’s Hospital in the Houston Medical center. That was 23 years ago. There were only a couple of hospitals in Houston that had that level of care then.

  4. *sigh* one of the things I am worried about is her inheriting PCOS. But I reason that I know so much about it (and it’s actually recognized by the mainstream medical profession now) that I will likely be able to help her avoid at least some of the horrors that the rest of us had to go through. You’re preaching to the choir about the snotty-nosed kids in the ER. Believe me. Nothing is more frustrating to a Nursing staff (and I suppose physicians to a lesser degree) than that stuff. Legally, they have to be treated even if its just to send them home with a script for OTC Robitussin *sigh* I would imagine with severe abdominal pain, she’ll be seen pretty quickly as long as nothing horrifying walks in the door in the mean time. Once I hit 20 wks I was told to go straight to L&D but before that we had to go to the regular ER and my wait was always forever b/c they only had two gynaecological exam rooms, and if they were occupied, I just had to wait while all of the snot-nosed kids got taken back first. Now, when I first found out I was pg (actually, just before) I came in with heart palpitations (that’s how I found out) and man I tell you what, I literally walked right in, and they took me back immediately. Not that I ever want chest pain, but talk about a fast track! Anyway, as of now I’m not high risk anymore. There would have to be pretty solid evidence of a real chance at Preterm labor to classify me as high risk again, but you better believe that I will be asking lots of Qs when I pick my new OB when we move. Eventhough I feel miserable, as far as they can tell my cervix is still ok.

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