It was a slightly out-of-the ordinary Fourth of July for the Ishoy family. Moving from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, back to New York was an abnormal way to celebrate their nation's birthday. Everything they owned was packed into two Ryder moving vans. Mr. Ishoy (Chris) was driving the first van, while Mrs. Ishoy (Kimberly) and the Ishoy's fourteen-year-old daughter, Lynette, were following close behind.
As they drove along the interstate, Lynette opened her window to stir the air in the van. Kimberly noticed a Budget truck, moving at about the same speed, positioned between her and her husband's truck over in the left lane. Without any notice, a small car passing on the left wanted to get around Kimberly and cut too sharply to avoid hitting the back of the Budget truck. The car hit Kimberly's van instead, forcing it off the road and causing it to roll.
“I felt a burning sensation in my hand while we were rolling, but with all the confusion, I didn't look at it,” explained Lynette in a recent phone interview.
When they stopped rolling, Kimberly and Lynette were hanging upside down by their seat belts. Bystanders told them not to move until the ambulance arrived. However, Kimberly felt something dripping onto her cheek. It was gasoline.
“I knew that Lynette and I had to get out of that van,” recalled Kimberly. “We started to struggle and realized that the only way out was through the window that Lynette had opened earlier.”
As I struggled to get out of the van, I noticed that something was wrong with my hand, but I didn't want to look at it. I just took a quick glimpse and turned my head away,” recounted Lynette.
Kimberly said, ”After getting out of the van, I noticed Lynette's hand. Somehow it had been badly injured during the accident.”
Seeing that Lynette was in shock, several people helped lay her on the ground so they could raise her feet. Fortunately, a doctor was one of the people in this group. He applied first aid and took a nearby woman's scarf and wrapped Lynette's hand tightly. “My thumb had been almost completely torn off. It was hanging by a small piece of tendon.”
As she and Lynette waited for the ambulance, Kimberly realized that her husband did not know about the accident. Her cell phone had been thrown from the van while it was rolling. Chris, several miles ahead, recognized that his wife was no longer following him, so he stopped to call her. One of the bystanders heard a phone ringing on the ground nearby and took it to Kimberly.
“Don't be afraid; we're okay,” reported Kimberly, as she explained what happened. While she spoke, the wrecked moving van exploded into flames. Chris saw the flash from the explosion. Luckily, he had just spoken with Kimberly and knew that she and Lynette were safe. However, all of the Ishoy's personal belongings were destroyed in the fire.
“Our biggest concern was that there wouldn't be a good hospital nearby,” recalled Kimberly. “We needed a specialist who could reattach Lynette's thumb. I know this sounds trivial, but she was really worried about being able to cheerlead.”
Lynette added, “I was a cheerleader back in Sioux Falls, and I really loved it. I didn't want to give that up.”
Fortunately, there was a specialist at the Divine Savior Hospital in Wisconsin who could reattach Lynette's severed thumb. It took several hours in the operating room to repair the damage. The doctor took close-up photographs to document his procedure. Lynette remembers that her arm and hand looked huge after the surgery because of the steel rods, braces, and swelling.
“The doctor in Wisconsin was hopeful that I may regain some use of my hand, but he thought it would be a long while before I would do any cheerleading. “
After a few days of recovering in the hospital, the Ishoys continued their journey to New York. There, Lynette's new doctor was not so optimistic about the injury.
“He told me he didn't believe I would ever regain total use of my hand, let alone do cheerleading ~ a real blow to my dream.”
Kimberly remembers that they had to change the bandage on Lynette's hand several times a day. “One day, as I was changing Lynette's bandage, I remembered the story that Gary Young told about the man who burned his arm and doused it in a vat of lavender. I thought that if it worked for that guy, it might work for Lynette. Each time I changed her bandage, I would drop lavender oil on the wound.”
Lynette added, “I didn't believe the oils would do anything at first. I thought my mom was really crazy using all those oils. I mean, she would open bottles of oils, and the smell would blast through the house. But then I thought, ‘Why not try them? I don't have anything to lose.' So I trusted my mom.”
“My entire hand was covered with a black coating. After using the lavender oil for about two days, all the black came off and I could see pink skin again. The lavender made my hand feel really good. I remember it would really hurt when it would rain; the lavender would make it feel better. After a while, I believe my body started to crave lavender. I would call to my mom telling her that I needed more lavender.”
Kimberly quickly ran out of the lavender. “I ordered more, but I didn't want to stop applying oils while I waited. I remembered that the Bible told of the Wise Men bringing frankincense and myrrh to the Christ child. I thought, ‘If it worked for the Christ child, then I'm sure it will work for my child.' I started applying the frankincense and myrrh. When the lavender came, I used all of them interchangeably. The results were amazing!”
“There was this really long scar with raised skin. It looked awful. There was also a lump of scar tissue by my thumb. My doctor said we would probably have to have more surgery to remove the scar tissue, but Mom kept applying the oils and the scars went away. You barely notice them now.”
Before seeing the remarkable difference that the oils were making, Lynette started looking for alternatives to her high school cheerleading career. “I loved cheerleading, so I kept thinking about how I could continue doing what I loved with a handicapped hand.
My family and I finally decided to start an All-Star cheerleading team. I called it the Rockland Rebels All-Star cheerleading. All-Star cheerleading is very different from school cheerleading. All-Star cheerleading is highly competitive and consists of gymnastics, dance, stunting, and cheer. I wanted the name ‘Rebel' because it reminded me that I was determined not to give in to what my doctor was telling me. I was determined I would compete as a cheerleader again!”
The accident had occurred at the beginning of July. “I was working hard to get the use of my hand back through a lot of physical therapy. The oils really helped my hand not hurt while I was doing the exercises.”
Lynette started using her hand again by the end of September of that same year (2002). That was a miracle itself. Even more amazing, however, was that Lynette started performing with the Rockland Rebels at the end of December! Since then, Lynette has competed individually in All-Star cheerleading and has earned several first-place trophies.
“I can tumble, do back handsprings, lift people up; I can do what any cheerleader can do. My doctor was amazed at my progress. I know the oils played a huge part in my recovery. They helped my hand heal, and they were wonderful for the pain. My hand would be hurting and feel much better after applying the oils. The healing was so quick; it had to be the oils.”
When Lynette returned to school, she was worried that people would be uncomfortable at the sight of her hand. “I was afraid to let people see it, so I wore an Ace bandage for weeks. It became such a hassle to put it on; I finally just left it off A few people, mostly girls, were disgusted, but the boys thought it was really cool. They would come up and hold my hand and say, ‘Oh, is this the hurt hand?' I would look really sad and say, ‘Yeah, it was awful.' Then they would feel sorry for me. It was a great way to get guys to hold my hand. I wish it had worked better!” Lynette laughed.
Funny, witty, outgoing, determined, focused – all apt descriptions of Lynette. She turned an accident that could have been a tragedy in her life into something positive. The accident and the healing benefits of the oils broadened her vision and helped her turn her passion for cheerleading into a lucrative business. Does Lynette see Young Living as another possible business in her life?
“I love the oils. I love how they smell. I use a lot of Ortho Ease™ in cheerleading to help with my sore muscles. I really like the stuff . I am so thankful that Mom is into the oils, and I was able to have them.” Lynette hesitated for a moment. “I am only sixteen, though. I will tell others my story of how the oils made such a huge difference. Who knows, maybe I should start a business right away!”
Note: the Rockland Rebels All-Star cheerleading team has taken many first place trophies in competition. They have also competed at Nationals. To see additional photos of Lynette and other members of the “Rebel” team, go to www.rocklandrebels.com
Reprinted with permission of Young Living, Lehi, UT 84043