Missy and Jeff Ford are shown in happier times before Jeff’s life threatening health problems surfaced in May.
LAFOLLETTE, TN (WLAF) – The long and winding road to recovery for Jeff Ford remains a haul. His journey began in late May with a trip to the La Follette Medical Center where he was diagnosed with a heart attack. From there, it was an ambulance ride to Parkwest Medical Center. While at Parkwest, Ford underwent six bypasses. A life flight to Vanderbilt Medical Center was the next leg of the journey. He remains in Nashville this morning. “Jeff has a long road ahead, but we praise God for where he’s brought him from and where he’s taking him,” said his wife Missy.
Ford was a rare three-sport standout for the Cougars at Campbell County High School in the mid-1980s. His dedication to athletics carried over to being a dedicated worker. He’s usually held down two jobs at a time and sometimes three. He is also a husband and father to Landyn, Lucas and Ryland.
Landyn Ford and his father Jeff celebrated his high school graduation in 2019.
For the past 20 years, Ford has been employed at the LaFollette Utilities Board (LUB). “Jeff is a great person. He’s an integral part of the team of operators at the wastewater treatment plant. I’ve known Jeff since we worked together at Dixie Roofing many years ago. We’re praying for a full recovery, and we really miss him here at LUB,” LUB General Manager Kenny Baird said.
Since May 25, Ford has survived a heart attack, kidney failure and pneumonia. He suffered multiple mini strokes, and his liver took the hardest hit resulting from the heart attack. His lungs and heart were being supported by three different machines at the same time, one of which was a ventilator.
“We have received a lot of bad news, but God has shown us miracle after miracle,” said Missy Ford. On Tuesday, doctors were prepping the 53-year- old to remove his breathing tube. Since his kidneys are now working on their own, the nephrologist stepped away from Ford’s medical team yesterday saying he was no longer needed.
The hardworking Ford is caught in a rare moment of relaxation.
“The doctors at Vanderbilt have told us repeatedly to basically give up,” said his wife . However, the long haul for Ford is far from over.
In an effort to support the Ford family, friends and family members are hosting a luncheon, concert and auction all rolled into one on Saturday at the former West La Follette School Cafeteria. From 12:30 pm until 2:30 pm a spaghetti lunch will be served for a $6 donation. Desserts are sold separately. David Graham, The Roberts Sisters, Joseph Hensley, Dustin Ford and New River Rising will be performing.
All proceeds from the fundraiser benefit Ford and his family. Donations are still being taken for food, drinks, desserts or auction items. Contact Lisa Sanders at 423.437.1113 or via Facebook to donate. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 07/08/2020-6AM)