Nolan Richard Whisenant was treated in the TIRR Memorial Hermann Disorders of Consciousness Program. His family has shared the following about Nolan.
If you were to ask Nolan to describe himself, I can imagine he would say if he could…“I love music, Jesus, Fender guitars, most musical instruments (even some random ones), Dr. Pepper, Twenty-One Pilots, Bring Me The Horizon, tacos, sloths, my Luna guitar and Dr. Pepper.”
He passionately loved Dr. Pepper.
Nolan graduated from Bryan ISD’s Rudder High School in 2016. He was a founding member of Vox Cor, Rudder’s acapella singing group and he was choir president. He attended Wellborn Baptist Church and was part of the praise and worship team. He was looking forward to attending college and had hopes of becoming a high school choir director.
Nolan was always listening to music, loved concerts, going to baseball games, tennis matches, vacations, more concerts, constant music radiating from his bedroom, leaving empty cans of Dr. Pepper, hiding candy wrappers in his backpack and flirting with girls.
Nolan had just graduated high school in 2016 when he was involved in a rollover auto accident. He and his father were on their way home from church preparing to go on a mission trip to El Salvador. Nolan was ejected from the vehicle and suffered a severe traumatic brain injury.
His time on Earth after the accident was so many things. Heartbreaking. Grueling. Frustrating. Grief. Victory. Progress. Regression. Tiny responses. No responses. Silence. Nolan fought for 3-1/2 years. 3-1/2 years in silence. Trapped in a body that was failing him. His mother and father, along with the help of home health care and his younger brothers and sisters, cared for Nolan at home. Nolan was 6 foot 4 inches. He used a ventilator 24/7 and had continuous tube feeds. He had to be turned every 2 hours to prevent pressure sores. While in his parents’ care, Nolan never had a pressure sore. Nolan had an all-star, rock-star-level healthcare team at TIRR Memorial Hermann. Dr. Sunil Kothari, TIRR Memorial Hermann Disorders of Consciousness Medical Advisor, and so many others never, ever gave up on Nolan. When one thing didn’t work, they were always contemplating our next move.
The thing that I love so much about Nolan’s TIRR Memorial Hermann team was that they always made us feel like they were fighting just as hard as we were to help Nolan get part of his life back. However small it was. WE NEVER GAVE UP AND NEITHER DID TIRR MEMORIAL HERMANN. We sincerely love TIRR Memorial Hermann.
After fighting for 3+ years, our son passed away on November 24, 2019, with his parents by his side. Nolan was 21 years old. He was the oldest son of Chad & Amanda Whisenant and big brother to Josh (18), Drew (16), Kayelyn (10), Emery (8) and Aurora (2).
For the 32nd consecutive year, TIRR Memorial Hermann is recognized as the best rehabilitation hospital in Texas and No. 2 in the nation according to U.S. News and World Report's "Best Rehabilitation Hospitals" in America.Learn More
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