God works in mysterious ways. For one Jamestown pastor, the Lord is speaking to him through broken bones and a shattered wrist.

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On the morning of July 29, the Rev. Shawn Bowman of Victory Lutheran Church was shingling his roof with the help of his sons and wife, Suzanne. The prize at the end of that hard work was a summer vacation – a vacation the family has yet to take.

Wanting to transfer the ladder to a safer location, Bowman grabbed the ladder rung to move it.

“I went on the roof knowing the ladder was in a precarious spot,” he said. “When I came down, as soon as I put two feet on the ladder, the bottom scooted straight out. In one second I fell eight feet down onto the cement. While I was falling, my wife stepped out of the way and gave me a corrective push on the shoulder to land on my hip instead of my head.”

Soon the ambulance was on its way.

In his 16 years of living in Jamestown, Bowman said he rarely thought of Jamestown Regional Medical Center. He’d had good experiences when their children were born, but beyond that, the family was usually healthy.

“I always thought we’d have to travel for care if anything major happened to us,” he said. “I never had a clue that we had such an amazing facility. Now, I wouldn’t think of going anywhere else.”

Bowman’s care began in JRMC’s Emergency Department.

With a shattered wrist and two breaks in his back, Bowman faced a long recovery and lots of pain.

“I was in that emergency room feeling sorry for myself when the doctor told me ‘you need to go to your room and thank God all day.’ He helped me realize that my wife actually saved my life. I bumped into her on my fall, which meant I hit my hip instead of my head. Had I hit my head, I’d have broken my neck – and likely not lived through it. That turned my thoughts around. Instead of feeling down and out, I felt grateful.”

From there, Bowman worked with JRMC Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Michael T. Dean and Physician Assistant Pat Walter.

The Orthopedic team at JRMC specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves. The specialty includes procedures such as total joint replacements of the hip, knee and shoulder, knee arthroscopy and fracture repair.

“Reverend Bowman was a pleasure to care for as a patient,” said Dr. Dean. “He is an optimistic person with a good attitude. I’m grateful he sought care with our team at JRMC.”

Dr. Dean repaired the left wrist during a complicated surgery Bowman was surprised to learn JRMC offered. Dr. Dean surprised him, and so did the nurses, admissions clerks and business office.

“Everyone must have gone to nice college at JRMC because everyone was professional and top of the line,” he said. “I don’t know why people in Fargo and Bismarck aren’t driving here for their care.”

Today, Bowman is back to preaching at his church. A recent sermon even included a shout out to his care team.

“I wanted our 200 worshipers to know we’ve got a very good hospital here. It’s one of the best little secrets in central North Dakota,” he said.

Though he’s still in a brace for his back and sling for his shoulder, Bowman is feeling better. Recovery feels slow – especially because with all the work his body is doing to heal, he tires easily. However, Dr. Dean expects a full recovery by the end of the year.

“It’ll be a great Christmas present,” Bowman said.

To learn more about Orthopedic care at JRMC, call (701) 952-4878.

 

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