To know Schuyler Arakawa is to love her. That’s what everybody who knows her will tell you.
I don’t know Schuyler — I’ve never even met her — but it feels like I do, thus I’m rooting for her 100 percent.
This story begins with a quick biography of who Schuyler is and what makes her special: She’s beautiful, she’s smart, she’s adventurous. She’s a great daughter, a great sister, a great friend.
She is from Tampa, Florida, and came to Connecticut to thrive at Yale University.
My connection to Schuyler is just a needle in the haystack of life. The daughter of a friend, one I had the pleasure of writing about during her four year high school career in Stamford — who is now a senior softball player at Yale — is a personal friend of hers.
And that’s how Schuyler Arakawa’s story came to me.
Last month, Schuyler — who was on a post-grad fellowship in the South American country of Peru, helping to build homes and teaching — and a group of friends took a weekend trip to Colombia.
Out of nowhere, tragedy struck from above.
According to a report from WFTS in Tampa, “During a day of river rafting and swimming, a large boulder came crashing down from 30 feet above the water and landed right on top of Schuyler’s head. Her friends rushed to her aid, pulling her out of the water and getting her to the hospital.”
There she was, more than 1,500 miles away from home and family, near death, being held in the arms of God and hope with no guarantees of ever seeing another tomorrow.
Her family quickly flew to Colombia to be at her side. They got her moved to Miami, where she has remained ever since, in a medically induced coma, fighting for her life from deep within as her family and friends keep praying for a miracle that will bring Schuyler back to them.
Schuyler’s reach in life extended beyond Tampa and beyond Yale. She has friends all over this world and together, as the news reach them, they rose up in concern.
To help keep everybody on the same page, Schuyler’s mother — herself an absolute pillar of strength for her family — has started a Facebook page called “Schuy Is The Limit” to keep everybody updated on her daughter’s progress.
The great thing about “Schuy Is The Limit” is that it just doesn’t update Schuyler’s condition in medical jargon, but it also chronicles the family’s journey through this trying time with so many stories of hope and passion.
The tragedy alone is enough to care about Schuyler and offer the family prayers and positive thoughts.
But to hear first-hand about the emotions that everybody close to Schuyler is going through, to hear about all the mini-miracles that seem to be pointing in the right direction, and to hear all about the positivity coming courtesy of mankind, well, it’s extending a beacon hope out from a single Miami hospital room.
The family’s main focus is on Schuyler, of course, but by bringing their daughter’s story to the friends and family members who know her so well, it’s also changing the world of others who maybe missed out on what makes Schuyler Arakawa so great in the first place.
Every time the family posts the latest Schuyler update, I’m sure to read to it and send my thoughts and prayers her way.
And Schuyler’s story is also a reminder that everything can change in a moment, so you should never hold back in living life to the fullest.
Get well soon, Schuyler. The world awaits your return.
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The family has started a gofundme page to help off-set the costs associated with this tragedy. You can find that here: https://www.gofundme.com/ztq2n4r8