Former Naples girl needs community’s help

Maia and John Gaddess and family.

A Naples girl now living in Sandpoint with her family is in need of the community’s help as her husband struggles to recover after a devastating fall while working.

On September 15, self-employed arborist, forest consultant and Idaho wildland firefighter John Gaddess fell from a tree he was removing in Bonner County.

It was a routine procedure. John doesn’t remember the fall itself but suspects there was an equipment malfunction with the rope that should have kept him suspended.

He sustained injuries including five broken ribs, a severed collarbone, two fractured and two compromised cervical vertebrae and one severely fractured mid-back vertebrae.

There was impact to his head, with his helmet cracked, and he had initial bleeding of the brain. A lung was punctured.

The family’s insurance has a very high deductible and his wife Maia, a licensed massage therapist, will forgo her work to take care of her husband, which puts the family at an indefinite pause for an income stream.

Maia is the daughter of Jean and Steve Hawkes, Bonners Ferry, and a Bonners Ferry Class of 2000 graduate.

Surgeries will correct the damaged vertebrae, but John will heal within the confines of a cervical and a thoracic brace and be unable to work for the next few months, prohibiting him from all work which sustains his family of four.

A GoFundMe account has been established and all donations are greatly appreciated. To learn more and to donate, click here.