2005 ~ 2006

Jim Petty's Miracle

James W. Petty, BYH Junior in 1965
Jim Petty in 1964-65


James W. Petty, BYH Class of 1966, an outstanding alumnus and self-employed professional genealogist, had a heart valve replacement in the Fall of 2005. Following the operation he said he "felt like he was 29 again"!

Shortly afterwards, however, he came down with a severe staph infection which nearly killed him -- people with the same problem have a 20 percent survival rate. Miraculously he overcame the infection, but the illness had damaged another heart valve and also the new one that had just been replaced. He underwent another extensive surgery on December 20, 2005, and many prayers were said on his behalf. He was released to go home in January 2006.
Jim has a big family, including his BYH family. Everyone's concern and prayers have been deeply appreciated.

An independent bank account was set up to receive contributions. Special thanks go to everyone who contributed to this successful effort.

Petty Heart Donation Fund Committee
Chairman & Treasurer: Doug Petty
Contact Person: Meg Hayes Allen
Secretary: Heidi Petty
Communications: Janice Bagley
BYH Website: Larry Christensen
Heart logo

Progress Reports
December 20, 2005 to November 10, 2006


Report as of 9 pm, December 20: Jim's doctors feel good about the surgery but Jim's heart is extremely weak and they haven't been able to get a regular heart beat. For now Jim is heavily sedated and on life support. The hope is that if they allow his heart to rest it will be able to take over again in a few days.

Doug Petty
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December 21: We have now entered the most challenging portion to date in our quest to return Jim to health. He is currently in critical condition in Thoracic ICU following open heart surgery today. They have him on life support and hope that during the coming 3-4 days that he can stay on these machines, that he does improve. There is so much that has to improve, I can’t write it but only say, I am at peace and know Heavenly Father’s will is being done. I am praying with every bit of me that he will survive and appreciate your continued faith and prayers in his behalf...

Mary E. Petty
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December 22: After Jim went back into surgery (#3) to stop the bleeding (where they found two spots that had to be cauterized), we now have a better understanding of the severity of his status: Dr. Reid announced that he had not anticipated finding Jim alive when he came in prior to that surgery. And since this surgery, the difference between Jim’s condition yesterday evening from yesterday morning is like the difference between night and day.

What all this means is – with improving heart function, good blood pressure, coagulation doing fine, kidneys operating rather normal and high-level brain function, Jim’s recovery is moving in the right direction.

He is still in very very critical condition but Reid says Jim has a real chance at beating this traumatic setback and he will probably stay on life support through next week as they work to wean him off the CPS (life support) machine. I am so grateful for the priesthood and the blessings that Jim has been given. For the prayers of the faithful and the charity that has been showered upon us in this great hour of need. Jim’s life continues to be extended and I am ecstatic.

And then there was this bonus – I got called into his ICU room by the nurse, Jill, who took me to his bedside. She leaned over and said “Jim, Mary is here.” and his eyes flew open and a big grin covered his face. Pa is there! And then I held his hand, stoked his head and told him I loved him and he grasped my hand. What a sweet three minutes we had together – mostly in silence. Then I told him good-night and good-bye – “Pa, I have to go home and take care of the dog. Is it ok to go home and take care of Cubby?” And he responded again with a big smile as he struggled to form words through the tubes in his throat. My dearie is here with us still.

I plan on having a great Christmas. You all do the same! HAPPY DAYS ARE HERE AGAIN. Please pray that his heart function will return to normal and that he will be able to support his own blood supply. He needs to have these abilities so they can get him off of life support and into the land of the living.

Mary
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December 23, Morning: Today's test results show that Jim's heart is healing. Saturday they will start to wean him off the machines. There has been a concern with unstable blood pressure. The doctors are responding to that.

Heidi Petty
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December 23, Evening: This is a very short note because I have to get to bed in order to get up early in the morning for Jim’s next OR experience.

Dr Reid called me tonight and told me he is going to take Jim into surgery tomorrow Saturday December 24, 2005 at 7:30 AM to take him off of the CPS life support machine – if Jim’s heart will agree to beat and pump properly. They will have to turn the equipment off for a while to see if his heart has recovered enough to return to full-time duty.

I am not sure what will happen if this course of action doesn’t work, but I know Reid has way too much invested in Jim to not have a back-up plan. Currently all indicators are good and his health is improving so the docs feel real good about this move. And if they can get more water off of him tonight, they may even be able to sew up his chest so Jim can really begin to heal. His kidneys are doing a great job in that department so we are hopeful tomorrow’s surgery will include closing up his open chest wound.

I had the most incredible experience tonight with Jim’s Dad, Robert Petty MD, retired ophthalmologist. We spent two hours reading the surgeon’s well written, comprehensive and detailed report from Jim’s big 14 hour marathon stay in surgery on Tuesday, Dec 20, 2005.

No wonder Reid said he was "verklempt" after that very difficult and technical surgery; especially after Jim’s heart quit working and they couldn’t stop the bleeding. I was pretty “verklempt” myself just from reading about the ordeal, and the thought that there is more to come for Jim.

Even though he is considered the sickest person at LDS Hospital right now, so much is going in the right direction that we are anxious to have him move onto the next level of his recovery which can only happen if he gets off life support and all the attendant tubes, pick lines, arterial lines, feeding tubes, and so on that are a necessary part of being the sickest person at LDS hospital. I would kind of like to see him lose that notoriety and get over to being someone normal on West 7. He has a ways to go to get there, but this surgery is another important step to achieving de-elevation in status!!

Jim is going to be one of 40 people in the hospital for the holidays. I could probably check in myself because there will be plenty of room but as long as he can’t talk and is kept so sedated – I will probably continue to come home to check on Cubbie, and to call Willie [in the mission field] on Sunday.

This will be a very different Christmas for us, but with my list being so short – I hope it will be easy to fill. I want Jim’s heart to work again and for Dr Reid to have a very Merry Christmas with his family. That would make my 25th the best ever!!!!

Mary
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December 24: Today Jim was moved from first place critical intensive care patient to second place at LDS hospital because this morning Dr Reid was able to get him off of the artificial heart/life support machine; but he’s going to be a million dollar man before they get him home to us.

It looks like we are settling in for a very long stay while the medical and surgical staff safely take him to healthy territory and home.

Today’s life support removal surgery went without complications and now the ICU doctors and nurses are working to handle all the fluctuations that this traumatic move has caused in his body. It is like playing a very intense video game – only it is real life with very permanent consequences. I just couldn’t stay and watch all those leads and drip-line computer screens; just too close and personal for comfort.

We go every day for a 5-minute visit to see Jim continue to inch his way towards better health. He will make leaps and bounds once they can close up his open-to-the-heart chest wound; hopefully that will be his last surgery. It should happen early next week after they stabilize him and get more water-weight off of him.

Then Dr. Reid can have Christmas with his family because he is on call this weekend. What these wonderful people have sacrificed for our family. While we (John Niels, JimR and I) were waiting 6 hours today at the hospital with Janice, Deborah and Doug (Jim’s brother and sisters) during Jim’s surgery, they commented how that was just the way it was in growing up in a doctor’s family. It has been a touching experience to be on the receiving end.

Now all we have to do is figure out a way for Jim to avoid pneumonia; survive another surgery; adjust to all the medication necessary to medically treat his weakened condition, and to strengthen his body, to get him out of ICU and onto the regular floor and home with no more infection. That is a pretty big list for Christmas, but I think we are on our way.

And hopefully by Valentines Day, Jim will be home to help me put together our annual letter to everyone. I could sure use some help in writing this year’s edition!!!

So you all have a wonderful Christmas. Dr Reid said it was pretty amazing that Jim’s kidneys were working. He had fully expected him to be on dialysis by now due to the 14-hour marathon surgery on last Tuesday. We are having a great Christmas with this news (miracle). Our love to you all!
Mary
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December 25: Jim is moving in the right direction; slowly but steadily in small baby steps. I am so excited!!! This has been the best day ever since he had surgery. (Translation: I didn’t crash after I saw him today.)

His nurse Derek has been able to keep his fluctuations under control with no complications so we have had a terrific Christmas. Jim is heavily sedated and hopefully, this is giving his heart the rest it needs to repair and come back to a full performance level. With his kidney labs stats showing his Creatinine going down to 1.6 and another day of a 48 bun lab report, we can clearly see he is going in the direction he needs to go to become healthy again. His heart is beating 2 times for every one as supported by the Arrow heart balloon pump system that is now helping it beat more regularly.Thanks to James Phillips for selling LDS Hospital this machine!As soon as they can get his excess water off, they will be able to take him off of this machine and then it is Jim and his heart meds. They hope to do this on Tuesday or later in the week when they close up his chest. Reid will do this when Jim is ready. ICU is a patience game – baby-stepping your way into the healthy zone.

Mary
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December 27: Mary called and said that Jim will have surgery tomorrow around 7 a.m. The balloon that assists his heart will be removed and the wound will be closed. This is really good news.

Heidi
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December 28: Jim is alive and survived today’s surgery. You should have seen Dr Reid when he came beaming into the ICU waiting room after successfully closing up Jim’s chest wound and taking out his heart balloon support – you would have thought he had just had quints and won the Nobel Peace Prize and found the Lost Dutchman’s gold mine. Oh – my cup runneth over! We are so grateful Heavenly Father has given us more time with Jim. Recovery, here we come!

Love, Mary
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December 30: JimDear is on the road to recovery – big time. He is light years ahead of where he was just a few short days ago when he had two nurses around the clock watching every blip he had on the multiple screens that governed his very life. Now he shares a nurse part-time with someone in another room, as well as all of his other torturous gift givers of life – multiple people are feeding him, bathing him, doing his meds, making him breath without his ventilator support, sitting him up, walking him across a room to sit in a chair, turning him over to prevent bedsores and so on. And his brain is one big confusion as he struggles to rid his body of all those wonderful previously-needed life-saving drugs. Are you getting the picture? He is getting better!!!!

Mary
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January 2, 2006: This afternoon, Dr Reid came into Room 701 of LDS Hospital’s Thoracic ICU and gleefully announced that Jim Petty was the "Poster Boy" for LDS Hospital. Two weeks ago tonight a scene played out in one of their 3rd floor operating rooms that gave no hope for such a wonderful turn of events as Jim receiving this "award".

And here he is now, able to sit up unrestrained in a regular chair, breathe on his own during rehab, off of his Primacor heart medication and all IVs, and write legible and coherent notes to communicate his thoughts and needs, all the while managing his own suctioning. Boy, was Reid a happy doctor!!

Jim is doing so great by passing the respiratory rehab tests that the docs hope to take out the ventilator sometime in the next couple of days so he can start to talk and eat regular foods. Oh are we happy!!!!

All of this is terrific news and continues to give us hope that Jim will make a full recovery and beat the MRSA. We can hardly wait to see what good news comes tomorrow. Stay tuned!!!! Love,

Mary Petty
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January 4: I spent a most unusual day with Jim today as he began in earnest the process of respiratory rehabilitation.

This is causing him some expected stress; elevated temp and blood sugars; fatigue and moderate oxygen acidosis and less than perfect mental acuity. A small pebble on his road to good health, our nurse Emily called it, and very expected after his lengthy time with a ventilator and heavy sedation due to his many surgeries and procedures.

So I decided to stay for about 6 hours and just hold his hand and rub his back and legs and talk about what he remembered about the last four months. He had begun writing it down and let me tell you, some of his memories are pretty creative. But all that aside, what was really important about today was I learned, I really learned what a gift Jim’s life is – the desired miracle of water did come out of a rock for us.

Throughout the day, nurses and care takers came into Jim’s room and asked him if he remembered them. Then they would share their story with him. They were there that Tuesday night when he was first brought into ICU and not a single professional thought he was going to make it. Remember that Dr Rasmussen, the intensivist’s first words to us in greeting that night were, “Patients in Jim’s condition do not make it.”

In fact, Jim’s nurse today, Emily, told us that in all her time in ICU she has seen many people come out of the operating room attached to the heart/lung bypass or CPS machine which is used during surgery, and now was being used as a last ditch effort to keep the patient alive, and she only knew two patients who had made it. And Jim was one of them.

I learned that the patient whose family I had encouraged last week after they were brought into the ICU still on that machine, had died within 20 minutes of being taken off of it after being on it for a week.

Why had Jim lived and they died? Our dear nurse Jill told Jim “You must be intended for something great, because I have never seen someone in your condition heal the way you have healed.” That something great is - Come home to me - Mary!!!!

Another nurse called him, “You miracle man; I was there the night they took out the balloon and closed your chest up. Look at where you are now.”

Mary
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January 5: Hi Everybody,

Just a quick note to let you know I visited Pa today and he is doing great! If there ever was proof that miracles happen, this is it. I have attached a picture of him I took with my phone that should give you a glimpse of how he is feeling. He is excited to talk to you all again in person, so until then let this serve as his way of saying "Hi" to you today.

Thank you for your continued concern and prayers on his behalf; it's working!

Love,

Jim R. Petty
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James W. Petty, BYH Class of 1966, in ICU, 1-5-06
JWP, Miracle Man, in ICU on January 5, 2006

Tuesday, January 10: Jim will likely be released next Monday or Tuesday depending on how the next couple of days go. His leg wound has healed. He is doing well with cardiac rehab and is building up his strength. They figure he can probably walk around the mall when he gets home to continue developing his muscles and lung capacity. The wound on the back of his tongue that formed from having the respirator tube in so long is not causing him any trouble; it is expected to clear up without incident. They have removed his pick line – replacing it today with an IV should they need access in the coming few days. I think the oxygen cannula is about ready to come off as he is doing so well in the breathing department. They have removed his nasal feeding tube. He has started eating solids and slowly working his way back to being able to drink liquids. Right now he aspirates even on his favorite hospital drink – Welches’ Grape Juice - because his swallowing reflex has not totally recovered. That means he must do a lot of coughing as the juice went into his lungs. Now he is a candidate for “exposure to and for getting pneumonia”. Oh, it never is dull in Room W706. But we are hopeful this is one nasty that we will not have to become medically educated about, nor he experience first hand.

His recovery is going so well. Let’s all pray it just continues along at this wonderful pace and he gets out of Dodge on Monday or so. All in one piece!

Love,

Mary
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Thursday, January 12: I would be leading the band, doing cartwheels, and cheering from the rooftops, if I weren’t so tired. But the joy is all here! JimDear will be home by 7 p.m. on Friday the 13th of January, 2006.

Dr. Brad Rasmussen from Intensive Care came by tonight and said it was a go for tomorrow after dinner. We will have our last meal together on 7West and then we are “outta” there! What a lucky day that will be for us!

Dr. Rasmussen told Barbara tonight that there was no medical explanation for his recovery. It just simply doesn’t happen in this kind of MRSA case. Water has come out of the rock for us. The Red Sea is dividing for us. We do get to keep the prize. How grateful I am for this long awaited day. God has richly blessed us.

Now we get to come home and get back to real life and take care of business! Of course Jim will probably be in rehab for a couple of months to bring him back to full strength, but this is the most critical step that has to be taken for him to make a full recovery. Jim is coming home.

Thank you again for all you have done these long, long months to ease our burdens. LDS Hospital has been terrific and we would recommend them to you all. MRSA is in every hospital across the world. Jim caught such a terrific case of it that no one else statistically can take away his poster child status.

If you need medical care, be grateful we do not live in the Civil War days or the Middle Ages. Our modern hospitals are better equipped to do more than ever before. And many dedicated professionals are devoting their careers to finding a cure for this nasty bug.

In the meantime, go in with your eyes open to the need for choosing a hospital with a good reputation. And that for me is LDS Hospital. I know – I have personally been in four others around the valley in the past six years and bar none – LDS beats them all in the quality of their patient care and professionalism.

And for heart surgery, my heart, my love and my trust is in Dr. Bruce Reid. He is tops. They say, God does not call a righteous man home before his time. Dr. Reid has the skills to do the required heart surgeries many of us will face as we get older.

The rest is in God’s hands and as I said to Jim –“You are going to have to be a real good boy and I am going to have to be a really good girl.” Heart surgery, any surgery, any medical condition, needs the Lord’s approval that we get to toil a little longer here on earth.

And with our prize in hand, we are oh so grateful for this blessing this great and Happy New Year – 2006! May God bless us everyone!

Love,

Mary
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Saturday, January 14: Christmas came a little late but it came to the Petty family last night and that's all that matters! Pa came home last night and we wanted to share with you a few of his first moments back. Pa looks great and is definitely on the road to a strong recovery and that is a direct result of the faith and prayers of all of you, the great doctors & staff at LDS hospital and the hand of the Lord. Thank you again for your support of our family through this time. We have been strengthened as a family because of you! There was a time that scenes like these in these pictures were hard to imagine, but now they are a reality and we are very grateful for this miracle. Make sure to stop by and say Hi to Pa if you get the chance or drop him a line, I'm sure he would love to talk to you personally. Thank you again for the love and support you have shown our parents and our family.

Love,

The Petty Family

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January 30, 2006: To Everyone,

Last night Doug and Heidi came over and we visited. What fun to see them and get to talk about more than just blood stats! We are moving on!

They brought by the latest James W. Petty Heart Donation Fund information. We are so grateful for your efforts to help us. The fund has raised about $6,000 to date (including what was given directly to us) which will come in handy as we work towards paying off our doctors' bills. Hopefully, the hospital will cover some expenses as part of the MRSA episode.

We are getting back into the groove here at work and picking up the pieces; with Jim here, I am able to focus on what has to be done. We will survive this "temporal" challenge. I just keep on thinking - we got through Dec 20th and the CPS machine - Heavenly Father wants us to be here a while longer, so we are going to put our shoulder to the wheel and go to work!

We have been blessed to have Jim come home and see a recovered future ahead. I have been taking him to doctors’ appointments and trying to get our business up and running again. He is in serious home rehab – he does the dishes and makes dinner. I think I have died and gone to Heaven. Yeah – he is home!!!!

We have wonderful doctors who are giving their best to help him regain his health quickly, safely and completely. We do not know what challenges or tests are before us, but now we know we will not face it alone. So many many good people have reached out to us during this struggle. What a wonderful experience it has been. Thank you again for all you have done to buoy Jim up and lighten his load. We look forward to seeing Jim's classmates again this summer at the 40th Class Reunion for BY High.

Thank you to all for your hard work and support; this has helped us remain positive and have the courage to go on.

Love, Mary

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January 31, 2006: Dear Larry, Wildcat Alumni, and Friends:

I have now been home from the hospital for two weeks, and have had some time to review my history over the past five months. I need to take a moment to express my appreciation to the many people who have opened their hearts to me and my family during this time.

I say that I’ve had to review the events of the past several months, because even though I’ve been the lead character in this drama, I’ve been sedated and asleep through many of the most exciting parts. I have teachers who will read this and say: “Jim hasn’t changed at all.”

What was intended to be “routine” heart surgery, and would allow me to be back to work in a matter of weeks, mutated into a fourteen- or fifteen-week monster. Infection knocked me out, and I had to struggle to stay alive and get well. I spent the better part of October and November in the hospital, before being released for Thanksgiving.

In December, I returned to the hospital for additional heart surgery after weeks on dialysis. Fortunately, my kidney kicked in and began healing during this time.

The next surgery was over the top on the seriousness scale. It involved replacing two heart valves, part of the aortic artery, and repairing the pulmonary artery. My doctors acknowledged that they had performed each of these surgeries many times in the past; but they had never performed them all together in one session. The surgery proved to be touch and go, and they thought they had lost me a couple of times.

I spent four days on a complete systems-bypass machine because my heart wouldn’t start on its own. On the fifth day, my heart had gotten its rest, and started working again, and has been getting stronger ever since.

I was fully sedated throughout this time, and a few days after getting off the machine, I began to wake up; just in time to see New Years on the news, and then to see the Rose Bowl a few days later (we all have our priorities). What a great game!

After getting off of the machine, the doctors said it should take six weeks for me to recuperate in ICU, and another month in the recovery unit. When I woke up, I began doing everything I could to get better. Exercise, be alert, follow instructions, and be as cheerful as possible. It must have worked, because after ten days I was out of ICU, and five days after that they told me to go home and never come back. In a hospital those are words of endearment.

Now after two weeks at home, and numerous doctor appointments, I am on the mend. I have read the many letters and notes from friends and family. I realize now that people who come into our lives at different stages are all brothers and sisters in an extended family.

As a genealogist I knew this in a more technical sense; but the response from people who were my schoolmates and friends as a child, and we were all children back then, has told be that you continue to be part of my living family.

I was so happy to hear from Larry Denham, whom I had known from third grade on; and Ralph McKnight, with whom I remember spending many hours in a tree house in his back yard. Barry and Bari Olson wrote, as did Noel and ReNon Zabriskie, and Marcia Croft Mangum (my first prom date). Students from other classes contacted us including LeEarl Baker. Throughout my ordeal Margaret Allen (Meg Hayes) has been a godsend, helping to set up a fund to get us through difficult times.

Most of all I want to thank Larry Christensen. In school, Larry was a best friend. After our missions, we drifted our own ways, as so many of us have. But in recent years Larry and I have made contact again through e-mail, and have rekindled that friendship. A best friend remains a best friend, and Larry has spearheaded the effort to keep people informed about me. His actions have expressed his love and friendship most eloquently. Thank you, Larry.

As for the rest of you, I have been assigned to the telephoning committee to contact everyone about the BY High Class of 1966 40th Year Class Reunion on July 1st. You’ll be hearing from me!

Sincerely Yours,

James W. Petty
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Update: March 9, 2006

JimDear has now been home from the hospital nearly two months and we are confident that the best is yet to be.

He continues to improve and anticipates a full recovery within the year. Currently his heart’s condition is the most positive of all of his affected systems. It is beating away like gang-busters and working at full capacity. His kidneys are recovering slowly but they are on an upward track for which we are most grateful. His eyes, his ulna nerve damage, his edema, and his diabetes all continue to struggle but we are seeing baby-steps of improvement even there.

Jim is functioning and able to contribute his talents, gifts, knowledge, experience, abilities, and positive nature to our lives and future. We are working hard to remember this great blessing and to maximize this contribution to our well-being.

Our business took a nosedive these past 7 months but we are pleased to announce that the big project we have been anxious to start with the molecular genetics DNA company is now in the serious negotiation stage. We hope to have a contract signed with them before the month is out so we can move ahead with our Jamestown 2007 Project. We are so excited to finally see something come of this dream. Our business will turn around – JimDear is alive and back to work.

Jim and I wrote an article for Meridian Magazine about his feelings on miracles. It is not all inclusive of what transpired in his MRSA experience, but it is one facet. Everyday we recall another piece of the story and remember different people and their part in the successful outcome of Jim’s illness.

I wish I had the time and energy and strength to write it all down and recognize each one of you individually for the vital part you played in getting us to where we are today; whether it was your time, resources, talents, money, prayers, correspondence, telephone calls, love, support, or whatever you did.

We are so grateful for you. I am just so tired; all I can say is thank you in the most general of ways. It has been said “When ye do it unto the least of these thy brethren, ye have done it unto me.” God knows everything and His angels have kept a record of your service in our behalf. We can never say thank you enough to each and every one of you – but Heavenly Father will take this record and say “Well done thou good and faithful servant. Enter into my rest.”

Love,

Mary Petty

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Friday, November 10, 2006

2006 Genealogy Seminar at Sea is Dream Vacation and Celebration of Life for Jim Petty Family

Royal Caribbean and the Mariner of the Seas recently delivered a dream vacation to Jim Petty, MRSA survivor and his family, thanks to Cindy Lorenz and Fly Away Travel and the 2006 Genealogy Seminar at Sea

The Jim Petty family has just experienced the perfect vacation on Royal Caribbean's mega-cruise liner, the Mariner of the Seas during the 2006 Genealogy Seminar at Sea.

We joyfully celebrated the life of professional genealogist James W. Petty, for the October Family History Month.

Jim, Mary, JimR, Julie, MelissaR, Stathi, John Niels, ThomasR and WillLW cruised for the first time from October 29, 2006 to November 5, 2006 in recognition that Jim Lives! Cubbie stayed home to guard the homefront!

A year ago in the fall and winter, our family faced the imminent loss of our friend, husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, and colleague because of the ravages of a 5-month battle with MRSA , a hospital-acquired staph infection that resulted from open heart surgery. (See details on James W. Petty's Meridian Magazine's article: "Miracles are where you look for them."

Jim's cardiac surgeon, who never gave up hope or professional effort to keep Jim alive, gave us a unique prescription in the middle of our darkest hours: go together as family in one year's time to celebrate Jim's life and victory over MRSA.

Long before this fight for his life, we had made plans to go on a business trip together because Jim had been given the opportunity to be a guest lecturer on a Caribbean Cruise with Cindy Lorenz and Fly Away Travel's 2006 Genealogy Seminar at Sea to be held in the fall of 2006.

When Jim survived and lived to participate with his family and his fellow professionals on this great experience through the Bermuda Triangle, we filled that prescription cup to over-flowing!

Highlights of the trip were many. Some of them were:

Mints on our bed every night and our rooms cleaned twice a day. We never knew what darling towel animal would greet us when we came to bed - a monkey, an elephant, a swan, a bat and more.

Dinner every night together in the Sound of Music dining hall warm and elegant hospitality.

Jim will always treasure snorkeling off St Thomas with his three little otters and then getting Mama to try it when we got to St. Maarten.

Watching Jim lecture with the rockin' and rollin' of the sea!

Giving Mindi and Starr and Claire a break from work!

Climbing up and down the stairs for 14 decks and never taking the elevator - well, almost never!

Having breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday, our way. And frozen yogurt from noon till nine p.m.!

We got the perfect family photo of all of us!

Waking up in the middle of the night to go out and see the stars and the ocean. Stunning!

And now that we have been so spoiled, we are all looking forward to more cruising; it is the best way to vacation! Thanks to all who made this unforgettable memory possible.

Mary E. Petty, B.A. (History)
Member of Salt Lake Utah Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists



James W. Petty, football, 1965-1966
Jim Petty in 1965-66
James W. Petty, Heirlines genealogy, 2005
Jim Petty in 2005


Heirlines logo combination