Make your own free website on Tripod.com
Advocating Parents
Advocating Parents


Jonathan

[Jonathan]Jonathan is a teenage boy who lives with his Dad, Joe, and his Mom, Lozanne, in Newmarket. He has a sister named Megan and a brother named Joel. He has a dog named Sammy. His family and friends love him very much.

Jonathan enjoys playing golf (he has a 7 handicap and was scheduled to play in the Buick Junior Invitational Golf tournament before his assault). He and his Dad have spent a lot of time together over the last few years working on Jonathan's golf game. (Actually, Jonathan taught his father how to golf.)

Jonathan's Mom always made sure that he was safe and healthy. Lozanne is well known for her expertise in health and fitness (she is a personal trainer) and no one knows more about healthy eating. Ask Wayne about her lentil dishes!

On June 29, 1999, the day after the end of school classes for the summer and the beginning of the summer holidays, Jonathan was walking his dog about 7PM through the local park. The park is quite beautiful and it was Jonathan's responsibility to take Sammy for a walk every day. Jonathan's mind was filled with plans and dreams for the summer, including the Junior invitational golf tournament and a summer job to pay for some new clubs.

Unfortunately, Jonathan stopped to use the washrooms situated in the park. A group of local teenagers who live in his neighbourhood (ages 16-17) attacked him and punched him. Somehow Jonathan managed to get away, and rather than going directly home, he ran the other way. The gang got in a car and followed him.

Jonathan tried to hide between two houses behind a bush but they spotted him and attacked him again. He could not escape as he was trapped by a large fence between the houses. They knocked him down and kicked him viciously until they fractured his skull.

Jonathan almost died several times, on the way to Toronto Sick Children's Hospital and on the operating table. It was over 3 weeks before he was stable enough to be moved to the trauma center at Sick Children's Hospital. Joe and Lozanne never left his side in the critical care ward. The kicks to Jonathan's head and upper body shattered his skull and bone fragments severed major arteries. The internal bleeding was so massive, it compressed Jonathan's brain into his spinal cord, resulting in ripped and torn neuropathways and damage to the brain stem, the frontal, parietal and temporal lobes.

The experts at the hospital told Joe and Lozanne to say goodbye to their son of almost 16 years and accept a new son with severely limited capabilities. They refused to accept this prognosis!!

Jonathan was transferred to the Bloorview Center, a neuro-rehabilitation centre for children under 18 at Leslie and Shepherd, where he remained in a coma for the next 2 months. It was uncertain whether or not he would ever recover.

Joe and Lozanne lived with him in his room, never left his side and tirelessly worked with Jonathan to provide positive stimulation to all of his senses. They took over his nursing care and would not allow anyone, including doctors to speak negatively in his presence..

Miraculously Jonathan gained consciousness several days before Thanksgiving. He is now working hard to regain the functionality that he once had. His progress is slow. Jonathan is still being cared for at the Bloorview Center . Joe and Lozanne were able to take him home on weekends and recently Jonathan was able to have a feeding tube removed from his stomach which was very uncomfortable. Jonathan is undaunted by all of this and is determined that "he can do it" and that he will be the same as he was before the vicious attack.

Jonathan's attackers were arrested within 48 hours and were charged at a preliminary hearing with attempted murder and have been free on bail to enjoy their lives with their families ever since.

Each day is a struggle for Jonathan but failure is not an option.

Jonathan and his family continue to remain positive and believe that hard work, positive thoughts, love and understanding will ultimately see Jonathan as good as new.

The young men that attacked Jonathan are 16 and 17. They are well educated and live in an affluent area. They have caused previous problems at their school and have intimidated many other individuals before they attacked Jonathan. They are not innocent young kids who accidentally got involved in something that they believed to be harmless.

They are now enjoying the benefits of the "Young Offenders" legislation in Canada.

For more information and to find out how to help visit www.jonathanwamback.com