YAKIMA, Wash - A solider from Selah severely wounded in Iraq two years ago was suppose to return to Yakima today, but an urinary track infection prevented him from traveling, offering a stark reminder of just how fragile his condition continues to be.
The Garden Village, a skilled-care rehab center in Yakima, expected Evan Mettie to arrive Tuesday afternoon to continue his recovery. However, doctors in New Jersey decided it was too dangerous to move him with the infection so his arrival will likely be delayed until later in the week.
Mettie suffered a serious brain injury on New Years Day 2006, when he was hit by an IED.
He can't talk, and can barely move -- but according to doctors, he has made significant progress since his initial injury. After spending several months in a coma, he can answer simple yes and no questions, by lifting his hand.
By moving to the Garden Village Rehab Center, Mettie will be closer to his family in Selah. The move will also allow his mother to return home, after spending almost every day by her son's side in New Jersey.
His family is looking forward to have Mettie closer to home, and taking another step in the healing process.