One of the first things you notice about Ivory Lindsey is his soft, melodic voice. That isn’t so noteworthy until you realize he was not expected to talk at all.
Another notable thing about Ivory is his love for horses. He likes caring for them, riding them and racing them. He’s an active Dolly Wright Outlaws trail rider. On May 1, 2016, after the group hosted a fundraiser and his horse, Jo Jo Dancer, had participated in a friendly race, Ivory was leading Jo Jo on a cool-down walk. Without warning, a horse across a fence grabbed Ivory by the throat and clamped down.
Once the horse released him, Ivory began falling and saw blood splashing on his boot. “My throat was destroyed,” he remembers. “I couldn’t breathe and was drowning in my own blood.”
Miraculously, he felt no pain. He signaled for help and was driven to a nearby hospital. Emergency personnel could do nothing to help and requested transport to Ben Taub Hospital.
“In the ambulance, I saw an angel. It was Dr. Todd [Rob Todd, MD, professor of surgery, Baylor College of Medicine and chief of General Surgery and Trauma, Ben Taub Hospital]. I saw his eyes and saw him nod, and I knew I would be okay. I found out later that Dr. Todd is normally not working every Sunday, but was on this particular day. Without him, I don’t believe I’d be here today.”
After fast and excellent trauma care, doctors began the long journey of reconstructing Ivory’s neck. Seven surgeries were needed to repair his bones, blood and air passages, muscles and vocal cords. Doctors predicted he would never talk again.
Ivory was in Ben Taub 28 days. “I wanted to talk so bad. When I was alone, I tried covering my tracheotomy and talking. One day, I heard my voice. Later, several of my doctors came in with a few Baylor students. One of them handed me a tablet and asked me to write the answers to a few questions. I said, ‘What do you want to ask me?’ You should have seen the looks on their faces!
“I left the hospital swallowing and talking. Ben Taub is the best hospital in the world, and I had the best doctors. They are nothing but angels sent by God, and they didn’t stop until I was 100 percent. The nurses are wonderful, magnificent.”