RICHMOND, Va. – A 3-year-old from Powhatan is in critical but stable condition after he was accidentally run over Monday by a riding lawn mower, but he could use your prayers, said a close family friend who shared Roan Sullivan’s story.
Roan, who just turned three, has a younger sister and an older brother. His mother Melissa is expecting another son on August 6.
Roan, who longtime family friend Elizabeth Compson described as quiet, slipped out of the house unnoticed Monday. Roan has always been “an active and curious little boy” who loves exploring, she said. A family member said that "outside" was one of his first words.
“It was just a normal day,” Compson said.
The family member had no idea Roan was out in the yard until they backed up with the lawn mower, Compson said.
Roan was rushed to the nearest hospital an hour away from his home, then immediately transferred to the Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU where he remains in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).
The family was not sure if little Roan would survive the drive to the emergency room, Compson said. He was blessed by both a priest and the family’s Powhatan Bishopric.
Much of the damage was to Roan's right side, Compson said. He has at least two more surgeries scheduled and is being kept medically sedated for now, though he can breathe on his own, Compson said.
Part of his right foot and toes were amputated. His radius bone (in his forearm) is gone, but his ulnar bone remains, said father Sean Sullivan in an online update.
Michelle Leilani Britos, Roan's Aunt, said that he calls her Shell.
“Just horror you know," she said. "Just praying that he was alive and thinking about my sister and Sean."
Roan has multiple tubes of different IVs and medicine running into one hand, and tubes all over his body.
Compson said the family anticipates, at minimum, one more week in the hospital. Roan faces a very long road ahead with more surgeries, rehabilitation, prosthetics, and therapies. His forearm will be rebuilt, his dad said, and they hope to save his hand.
“We are just grateful that he is alive,” she said. “I set up this fund because they were scared already about having a fourth child.”
The family has flown in from all over the country to help, and Compson called for prayers from the community.
“Any way that we can get the word out to provide any type of support,” she said.
Michelle said that the family takes shifts holding Roan's hand.
“There is no way we could handle this without you all,” Sullivan wrote. “I've never experienced anything like this and I am so thankful. I've never felt more love and Melissa and Roan feel it too.”
If you would like to support the family, you can click here for the "Team Roan: GoFundMe Page."