Paul Ausman and Raquel Hoepner-Ausman suffered traumatic brain injuries 16 days apart in April 2017. Two-and-a-half years later, both Paul and Raquel are on the comeback trail.
Paul Ausman was never shy about throwing a curveball during his days as a professional baseball pitcher.
But Ausman and his family have seen more curveballs in recent years than many families see in a lifetime.
After both Paul and his wife suffered significant brain ailments 16 days apart in April 2017, theyve continued battling and two-and-a-half years later they and their family are on the comeback trail.
While their road to recovery is far from over, they move into Thanksgiving improving every day with plenty to be thankful for.
Raquel and Paul's injuries came when their son Andrew (center) was a senior at McDonell. Andrew is now a junior at UW-Eau Claire.
Raquel Hoepner-Ausman worked at Macys in Oakwood Mall for 26 years until the store closed in March 2017. A month later she collapsed after suffering a brain aneurysm in her familys home in Chippewa Falls and was taken to HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire before being airlifted to Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota.
A little more than two weeks later, Paul was taken to the emergency room at HSHS St. Josephs Hospital in Chippewa Falls being before taken to Regions and diagnosed with having a brain tumor the size of a golf ball.
Both Paul and Raquel faced grueling recovery roads as their daughter Nikki lived in the Minneapolis with her family and a full-time job, and their younger son Andrew was finishing his senior year at McDonell.
A day after being admitted into Regions, Paul had a brain biopsy and was diagnosed with Lymphoma of the brain, and on May 4, 2017, had surgery for an enlarged lymph node.
Pauls vocal cord was accidentally nicked during the procedure and he lost his voice and could barely talk. The beginning of the same month, Raquel was transferred to a long-term care hospital in St. Paul and started to relearn to speak, eat and respond to commands.
She was later moved to a nursing home in Bloomer before needing brain surgery less than a year later to repair a blood vessel in her brain and had to start the process of relearning to eat, speak and respond to commands all over again.
Paul was approved for stem cell therapy and underwent his first attempt at a stem cell transplant on Sept. 28, 2017, in Rochester, Minn.
However, less than a month later, Paul was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer in both eyes, putting the stem cell transplant on hold while multiple surgeries were performed in both eyes to attempt to remove cancer cells. Follow-up chemotherapy injections into his eyes were performed until the start of the stem cell procedure, which he was able to restart in February 2018.
Paul was discharged from the stem cell transplant hospital on March 27, 2018, one day before Raquel had her brain surgery.
Raquel moved to the Rutledge home in Chippewa Falls in early June, across the street from the Ausman home, where she currently resides and rehabilitates.
Paul continued to receive chemotherapy shots in his eyes to keep the lymphoma in remission and recently has moved to a daily pill. Paul still makes monthly trips to Rochester as his body rebuilds its immune system.
Paul graduated from Eau Claire Regis High School and was drafted in the 14th round of the 1973 Major League Baseball amateur draft by the Milwaukee Brewers. He played in the minor leagues for five seasons with the Brewers and Minnesota Twins, compiling a 2.93 earned run average across 147 games and 276 innings.
He reached as high as AAA with the Twins and nearly cracked the big league roster as the final cut during spring training.
The left hander shared the field with future Hall of Famers such as Robin Yount, Dave Winfield, Jack Morris, Rod Carew, Alan Trammel and Bert Blyleven before his career was finished after the 1977 season.
Paul would return to the area and earn his bachelor degree at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire before getting his masters from the University of Iowa.
He worked a number of jobs in the area, most recently as a store manager for the Mega Holiday station near the Family Fare grocery store downtown in Chippewa Falls.
When the Ausman family needed help, it came from a familiar face to the Chippewa Falls baseball community.
In the days and months after Paul and Raquel suffered their initial ailments, medical bills started piling up, as did the stress of figuring out how to take care of the bills. The family researched grants that could help them with their mounting medical costs, but nothing they found would shoulder the load.
Thats when Joe Vavra came into play.
The Chippewa Falls native and longtime MLB coach met Ausman after Vavra was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the eighth round of the 1982 draft.
We can't do it without you. Support local journalism with our BEST DEAL EVER!
Please call 877-782-0193 to upgrade your subscription.
- Learning to be relentless - The Daily Republic - January 19th, 2020
- Here's Why Stemline Therapeutics Dropped Today - Motley Fool - January 19th, 2020
- Medics key to spotting signs of child abuse, Abu Dhabi conference hears - The National - January 19th, 2020
- Smart Group & A4M Concluded their First India Conference 2020 - NewsPatrolling - January 19th, 2020
- 'Comfort' or con? Despite money, education, well-off Filipinos turning to questionable treatments - Coconuts - January 13th, 2020
- Doctor's Hospital focused on incorporation of AI and machine learning - EyeWitness News - January 13th, 2020
- Viewpoints: Medicaid Expansion Reveals How Liberal Policies Make For Good Politics; Hey, Congress, What's The Hold Up With Surprise Medical Bills? -... - January 13th, 2020
- White blood cells: Function, ranges, types, and more - Medical News Today - January 10th, 2020
- Tacitus Therapeutics Launches in Collaboration with Mount Sinai to Develop Stem Cell Therapies for Life-Threatening Diseases - PRNewswire - January 10th, 2020
- Tip Sheet: Mesh loaded with T cells shrinks tumors; second dose of CAR-T cells shows potential; and gene-edited cells stay safe as immunotherapy... - January 10th, 2020
- 3D-printed Organs Give Hope to Transplant Patients Now. Powered by - Now. Powered by Northrop Grumman. - January 10th, 2020
- Seattle Childrens faces widening array of lawsuits over fatal mold infections - Seattle Times - January 10th, 2020
- Landisa: My cancer can relapse but here's why I am not afraid of it any longer - News24 - January 10th, 2020
- 'You wouldn't give it to your worst enemy': what it's like to live with Lyme disease - Telegraph.co.uk - January 10th, 2020
- The 'supercells' that cured an infant's grave genetic illness - Japan Today - January 10th, 2020
- Edited Transcript of BYSI.OQ earnings conference call or presentation 18-Dec-19 1:00pm GMT - Yahoo Finance - January 8th, 2020
- How These Practitioners Can Help with New Year, New You Goals - Milwaukee Magazine - January 7th, 2020
- Summerside gym needs donations for three-year-old boy with cancerous brain tumors - The Journal Pioneer - January 7th, 2020
- The woman who spent 7 years in and out of hospital battling rare condition some doctors had never seen - Leicestershire Live - January 7th, 2020
- West Norwood girl, 3, dies in her parents' arms after brave battle with leukaemia - MyLondon - January 7th, 2020
- DuPont, C8 Contamination And The Community Left To Grapple With The Consequences - WVXU - January 7th, 2020
- What are the odds? Stem cell recipient learns her donor is also in Ottawa - Ottawa Citizen - January 3rd, 2020
- Understanding the Key Aspects of a Multiple Myeloma Diagnosis - Curetoday.com - January 3rd, 2020
- The 'supercells' that cured an infant's grave genetic illness - FRANCE 24 - January 3rd, 2020
- How supercells cured an infants grave genetic illness - Raw Story - January 3rd, 2020
- Firm adds a new wrinkle to anti-aging products - Williamson Daily News - January 3rd, 2020
- First Edition: January 3, 2020 - Kaiser Health News - January 3rd, 2020
- Finn the Fabulous to ring treatment bell after leaving hospital - expressandstar.com - January 3rd, 2020
- Conway supports man fighting rare double diagnosis of MS, ALS - THV11.com KTHV - January 1st, 2020
- Predicting shifts in technology and science can be tricky, but here's what could happen in 2020 - inews - January 1st, 2020
- None of these four beaming children would be alive today if a stranger had not given blood - The Sun - January 1st, 2020
- On the Road: A year to remember - WCBI - January 1st, 2020
- 2019: the year gene therapy came of age - Breitbart - January 1st, 2020
- The health stories we won't forget and what 2020 holds - nation.co.ke - January 1st, 2020
- Chinese scientist who claimed he genetically edited babies gets prison term - Los Angeles Times - December 30th, 2019
- Year in Review: Gene Therapy Technology and a Milestone 2019 for Medical Research - News18 - December 30th, 2019
- Finding Joy While Struggling With Infertility Over The Holidays - SheKnows - December 25th, 2019
- The reporter driven to do 'whatever it takes' to conquer cancer and return to the press box - The Athletic - December 25th, 2019
- A blood cancer diagnosis helped me find true happiness - The Guardian - December 25th, 2019
- Michael Schumacher health: Doctor reveals truth about Schumi as Lewis Hamilton is catching up fast to break F1 legend's record - EconoTimes - December 25th, 2019
- Mother and son, together, cope with autism and multiple sclerosis - MLive.com - December 25th, 2019
- Local firm adds a new wrinkle to anti-aging products - Williamson Daily News - December 25th, 2019
- Miracle recovery of rider and her horse after severe injuries - Yorkshire Post - December 25th, 2019
- Before the 90 Days Stephanie is YouTuber Stepanka. Is she really ill & bi? - Starcasm - December 21st, 2019
- Stem Cell Therapy Treatment - Melbourne Stem Cell Centre - December 10th, 2019
- U.S. Stem Cell Training | Regenerative Medicine Training ... - December 10th, 2019
- Injectables Are the Future of K-Beauty Trends in America - Yahoo Lifestyle - December 10th, 2019
- ASH 2019 Roundup: The Latest on CAR T, New Treatments for CLL, and Using Genes to Predict a Common Side Effect - On Cancer - Memorial Sloan Kettering - December 10th, 2019
- Orgenesis and Theracell to Launch Point of Care Cell and Gene Therapy Centers within HYGEIA Group's Hospital Network in Greece - GlobeNewswire - December 10th, 2019
- 2019: The year gene therapy came of age - Jamaica Observer - December 10th, 2019
- Ethan's Army gets a boost - Brockville Recorder and Times - December 10th, 2019
- BREAKING: Baby body parts criminal trial to proceed against Daleiden with possible jail time - Lifesite - December 7th, 2019
- 'I was given a terminal diagnosis and then a new therapy cured my leukaemia' - The Telegraph - December 5th, 2019
- Stem Cell Therapy Market Robust pace of Industry during 2017-2025 - News Description - December 5th, 2019
- A #ReUp of 2019: The year when gene therapy, DNA modifications came of age & saved lives - Economic Times - December 5th, 2019
- 100 greatest innovations of 2019: Best of What's New - Popular Science - December 3rd, 2019
- Susan J. Demas: Right-wing lies on abortion paved the way for Trump - Michigan Advance - December 3rd, 2019
- Alum's New Book Recounts His Fight to Help First Responders Sickened after 9/11 - BU Today - December 3rd, 2019
- Quinn Waters: Weymouth, Massachusetts three-year-old is seeing the world for himself - CBS News - December 2nd, 2019
- 'We didn't worry when 2-year-old refused to use potty - then her lips went blue' - Mirror Online - December 2nd, 2019
- Upstate SC toddler survives rare cancer and the risky procedure used to treat it - Greenville News - December 2nd, 2019
- 13 YEAR OLD BOY WHO SURVIVED RARE CHILDHOOD CANCER TWICE SUPPORTS NEW FUNDRAISING CAMPAIGN - MENAFN.COM - December 2nd, 2019
- Heartbreaking photograph shows the reality of childhood cancer - Yahoo News - December 2nd, 2019
- Family releases photo sharing the reality of childhood cancer - NEWS.com.au - December 2nd, 2019
- "For the first time in 25 years this means hope" - Leeds family fundraising for life-changing MS treatment - Yorkshire Post - December 2nd, 2019
- Calgary MP won't give up effort to add donor consent option to tax forms - Calgary Herald - December 2nd, 2019
- Every 13th man has a hair transplant according to Bookimed study - PR Web - November 29th, 2019
- Heartbreaking photograph shows the reality of childhood cancer - Yahoo Sports - November 29th, 2019
- 253 miles in 4 hours: A Syracuse mans race for a lung transplant, and the angel who helped him - syracuse.com - November 29th, 2019
- Exploring the Future of Prostate Cancer with City of Hope - Curetoday.com - November 29th, 2019
- Imani Barbarin Coins #PatientsAreNotFaking to Fight Back Against Negative Patient Stereotypes - The Mary Sue - November 29th, 2019
- South Carolina toddler survives rare cancer and the risky procedure used to treat it - USA TODAY - November 29th, 2019
- Mum shares heart-wrenching photos to show the 'reality of childhood cancer' - Mirror Online - November 29th, 2019
- Diabetic foot wounds kill millions, but high-tech solutions and teamwork are making a difference - The Conversation US - November 29th, 2019
- Toddler Bravely Cheats Death After He Survived Rare Cancer And Its Treatment - The Digital Weekly - November 29th, 2019
- 'My daughter's death took me to the darkest place, but I've learned it's possible to come back' - Telegraph.co.uk - November 29th, 2019
- 2nd Edition Africa Healthcare Extension Summit And Africa Women's Health Summit Starts Today In Nairobi - Africa.com - November 29th, 2019
- How the Packers' Za'Darius Smith brought joy and awareness to one woman's cancer fight - The Athletic - November 29th, 2019
- Thalassemia Treatment Market With Top Countries Data : Analysis and by Recent Trends and Regional Growth Overview Forecast 2026 - News Description - November 29th, 2019
- The ART of Having Children - Vision Insights and New Horizons - November 24th, 2019