UPDATE: Injured Union College Acrobat Heather Boulais Still in Critical Condition

(Spectrumbot) #1

Union College student Heather Boulais is still in critical condition after falling 23 feet during a Wednesday night Gymnaires practice, but has made a few small improvements according to a family spokesperson.

Boulais was reportedly wearing a safety harness while attaching her aerial silks to the Union College gymnasium ceiling during a routine practice. She landed partially on a mat and was rushed to an area hospital.

KETV 7 news reported that the Gymnaires met last night to talk about the accident. Their next performance is scheduled to take place in about two weeks. They believe Boulais would want them to carry on.

Hundreds of students gathered Thursday morning at the Union College campus to pray for the 23-year-old senior elementary education major. Counselors have been on hand to offer support to those who need it.

Union College has continued to update its website with sporradic progress reports as information becomes available. So far there hasn’t been much to report.

The incident is still under investigation, however the Union College gymnasium has since reopened after being closed Thursday.

News of Boulais’ accident has spread across social media, and many of Union College’s sister schools have spoken out to lend their support.

La Sierra University posted on their Facebook page earlier this morning: “There are many ways that the Seventh-day Adventist colleges and universities in North America compete with each other: for students, for faculty members, for donations and support. But there are also times when we stand together as the family we truly are, like today. The entire La Sierra University community offers our prayers for this student-athlete at our sister school in Nebraska, Union College. May God's healing hand be on the situation.”

The Student Movement, the official student newspaper at Andrews University, posted a link to the news broadcast summarizing Boulais’ condition.

Pacific Union College also posted on their Facebook page: “As Union College gathers in their church in Lincoln, Nebraska, now to pray for the student injured last night, we join them in prayer, together lifting up the student, their family, and the entire Union College community.”

Many use the hashtag #UnionUnited or #UnitedinPrayer to help connect a community of prayer warriors for Boulais.

Emily Wood, a Union College student and writer for Union’s College’s official news publication The Clocktower, wrote this on her Facebook page following the accident: “Please pray for my fellow Unionite. We are a family, all God's children. And when one sibling is hurt...we all hurt. ‪#‎UnionUnited‬.”

The Union College Gymnaires Facebook page has also been flooded with kind words and prayers from people across the United States.

Phyllis Fields-Conley posted, “Praying for the entire team and especially Heather and her family. God is the great physician. He will carry you all through this.”

Dorothy Nesmith wrote yesterday about hearing the ambulance as it came to the Union College campus. “We were in prayer meeting last night at CVC and heard the sirens," she said. "We had prayer for ‘whomever is in need’ as we saw the ambulance head to the hospital. Please know that our prayers continue. God is amazing! Never give up faith in His power.”

Chuck Henry posted, “As with all of the others our heart and prayers will continue to go up for Heather. I kept thinking about it last night and my heart also especially goes out to the team. It's very hard to see a member of the Gymnaires' family hurt, and my prayers are for all of you as well.”

Union College president Vinita Sauder made a statement on the Union College website concerning satefy. “Student safety is our highest priority and we are in the process of reviewing what happened to determine the cause of the fall. We will do everything possible to ensure something like this doesn’t happen again.”

Rachel Logan is a writing intern for Spectrum Magazine.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/6569

(jeremy) #2

this is such a sad incident…

(Randle Patrick) #3

May her youth and athleticism serve her well.

May her faith, and her family’s faith, be sustained.

(Kevin Paulson) #4

We all continue to pray for Heather—and for her family, her teammates, and all the students at Union. May God grant each of them courage and comfort in this trying hour. And may Heather get completely well soon!!

(Kevin Paulson) #5

Is there any further news? Prayers continue.

(Interested Friend) #6

I’m praying for Heather’s speedy recovery as I’m certain many are.

In the public sector there is usually convened a commission or some such group to ascertain what went wrong. Are there some principles that may be employed by SDA educational institutions to avoid serious accidents? Maybe the following offers some guidance:


(Mercy triumphs over judgment. James 2:13) #7

Latest update from the Union College website:

"According to her parents, Boulais remains in a medically induced coma with a reduced body temperature. 'She is still in extremely critical condition, but the events of last night have given us our first ray of hope,' they said. 'The follow-up CT scans we received last night were the best we could hope for, and the medical staff has begun raising her body temperature back to normal—a process that will take a couple of days.' "Her parents were quick to thank everyone involved in caring for their daughter. 'We’ve seen many miracles, including the quick actions of Heather’s coach and teammates, the immediate transportation to the top trauma care unit in the tri-state area, and her surgeons’ excellent care,' they said. 'We ask for your continued prayers over the next 48 hours. Our God is an awesome God!'" ... Cards can also be mailed to: Union College ATTN: Prayers for Heather 3800 S. 48th Street Lincoln, NE 68506

Contributions to the family’s expenses can be made by check or online. Please make checks payable to Union College and mark them “Boulais Fund.” Mail to:
Union College
Boulais Fund
3800 S 48th Street
Lincoln, NE 68506

To give online: https://securelb.imodules.com/s/339/index.aspx?sid=339&gid=1&pgid=350&cid=903
In the “designation” pull down, select “Other—Please specify” and type “Boulais fund.”

(David P R) #8

My prayers are with this poor dear child. But on the other hand isn’t it time to heed the counsel and end competitive sports?

“Satan has devised a multitude of ways in which to keep men from serving God. He has invented sports and games…” (RH, 6/13/1907)

“Gymnasium exercises may in some instances be an advantage. They were brought in to supply the want of useful physical training, and have become popular with educational institutions; but they are not without drawbacks. Unless carefully regulated, they are productive of more harm than good. Some have suffered lifelong physical injury through these gymnasium sports. The manual training connected with our schools, if rightly conducted, will largely take the place of the gymnasium.” (5T, 523)

“The cities of today are fast becoming like Sodom and Gomorrah. Holidays are numerous; the whirl of excitement and pleasure attracts thousands from the sober duties of life. The exciting sports–theatergoing, horse racing, gambling, liquor drinking and reveling–stimulate every passion to activity.” (9T, 89)

“But do not substitute play, pugilistic boxing, football, matched games, and animal exercises, for manual training. All of this stripe and type should be vigilantly prohibited from the school grounds.”–Letter 27, 1895

If this counsel were heeded this incident would never have happened. I know I’ll get a lot of flack for this, but so be it. This girls well being and future potential candidates for injuries can be spared if we would just listen to what the Lord says.

David R.

(Mercy triumphs over judgment. James 2:13) #9

You think that manual & farm labor carry no risks? Please show the data proving their safety is better that the safety of any Adventist school sport.

(David P R) #10

Did God place Adam in a garden or did he give him a football?

As one of the quotes I provided said:
“The manual training connected with our schools, if rightly conducted, will largely take the place of the gymnasium.” (5T, 523)

But then again - are you one to listen to the SOP?

David R.

(Mercy triumphs over judgment. James 2:13) #11

So I was correct to think you didn’t have any such information.

(Carolyn Parsons) #12

You are right, Hopeful, farming is one of the most dangerous jobs around and in many states there is little regulation too about children and teens working on the farm.

(Mercy triumphs over judgment. James 2:13) #13

Dangerous for fatalities & for serious injuries.

(George Tichy) #14

Oh man, you still comment on this type of “approach?”…

(Carolyn Parsons) #15

Really heartwarming, using a tragic accident to further your own agenda. I am sure the Boulais family find it comforting.

Just a thought: If you have to say “I’ll get a lot of flack for this” it is probably not the right thing to say.

(Mercy triumphs over judgment. James 2:13) #16

I fell off the wagon.

(Rohan Charlton) #17

Mate you are well outta line here. Your first sentence said it all…

Leave it at that.

My prayers are with this poor dear child.

Amen. Mine are too.

(David P R) #19

But don’t talk about the problem on why she got hurt? This young girl may die or be severely injured for life, and you tell me to not say anything? But yet scream and holler about Ted Wilson and his policies? or something similar? Mixed up priorities.

David R.

(David P R) #20

So don’t talk about the problem that caused the accident? If she was hit by a drunk driver would you tell me not to campaign about drunk driving?

David R.

(Rohan Charlton) #21

Stop it man…Not the time or place. Have some compassion and sensitivity.