Island Lake trustee remains hospitalized after crash
Island Lake Trustee Will Ziegler remains hospitalized after an all-terrain vehicle crash left him badly injured, village officials confirmed Saturday.
Ziegler suffered a spinal injury, a fractured skull and multiple broken bones in the wreck, which occurred the day before Thanksgiving in North Carolina, according to information at a gofundme.com page established for his family. He may be paralyzed and is breathing with a tracheostomy tube, village officials said.
Ziegler had been hospitalized in North Carolina and only recently returned to Illinois. He's undergoing rehabilitation at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in Chicago, where he's expected to stay for about eight weeks, according to the GoFundMe page.
Outpatient therapy is expected to follow, according to the page.
Island Lake Trustee Chuck Cermak said he's talked with Ziegler's wife, Vicki, about Ziegler's treatment. Cermak said Ziegler can't speak much but added that he smiles and is "in good spirits."
The GoFundMe page aims to raise money to pay for home remodeling that will be needed because of Ziegler's injuries, as well as the acquisition of a wheelchair-accessible van. As of Saturday afternoon, more than $4,200 had been raised.
The Ziegler family's expenses will be significant, Trustee Chris Carlsen said.
"This is when a community has to pull together and show its true colors," Carlsen said.
The online fundraiser can be found at gofundme.com/f/5bx78-help-make-billy039s-housevan-wheelchair-accessible.
Ziegler has been a trustee for nearly one year. He was appointed to fill a vacancy on the board in January and was elected to a four-year term in April.
Ziegler will be allowed to participate in board meetings using the telephone or other electronic means if needed, Cermak noted.