Local student begins long road to recovery after emergency brain surgery

NOW: Local student begins long road to recovery after emergency brain surgery

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. --- A Brandywine Elementary School student is in recovery after what was thought to be a sinus infection turned out to be a much more serious condition.

Izaak Baiz, 12, was rushed into emergency brain surgery after an infection led to swelling in Baiz’s brain.

Baiz visited his normal physician, urgent care and the ER before an ambulance eventually had to be called.

The infection left Baiz unable to move the right side of his body.

Baiz is usually very active and can almost always be found with a baseball bat in his hand, according to family and friends.

“He’s funny,” said Levi Krueger, Izaak’s best friend.

“He’s a good, well-rounded kid,” said Shawna Chavers, a family friend.

Baiz’s normal everyday routine suddenly changed when the infection tookover.

“He’s my best friend and I would be lost without him,” said Natalia Baiz, Izaak’s sister.

Baiz has played baseball since the age of 4 and football and basketball for three years, according to his mother, Nichole Baiz.

“I can’t imagine Izaak coming home and not being able to play sports, especially baseball,” said Chavers.

Baiz rounded first base on Wednesday, making huge steps forward and baby steps back, according to family and friends.

“To see him in that hospital, the way he was with all the wires and the tubes…we honestly didn’t know what was going to happen,” said Hollie Krueger, a family friend.

Baiz showed great signs of improvement on Wednesday by nodding his head, moving parts of the right side of his body and speaking out loud to one of his best friends for the first time.

“Because hearing his voice…that was…you didn’t know if you were going to,” said Krueger.

Family, friends and the community are taking action to make sure Izaak is not going through recovery alone.

Baiz’s entire baseball team even signed a baseball to remind him of their support.

Levi Krueger, 12, described Izaak like a brother and he has already crafted a business plan to sell red “Fighting Izaak” bracelets, using his own money to show support.

“I wanted him to come back and play sports and stuff and I want to have him feel better,” said Levi Krueger.

While it is just the beginning of a long journey to recovery, Baiz has received the support of family, friends and the community.

“It’s been a really, really good day for him,” said Chavers. “So, it’s been a pretty happy day. No setbacks.”

Baiz will have to be fitted for a helmet, but it is too soon to determine any long-term effects or just how long he will be in the hospital until the swelling in his brain goes down, according to Chavers.

A Facebook page has been set up to monitor any updates or contact the family. If you are interested in donating,  you can visit the GoFundMe page here.

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