On Friday, August 12, Easton Oliverson, a 12-year-old Latter-day Saint, was living many little boys’ dream when his Snow Canyon Little League team defeated a team from Nevada to become the first Utah team to ever advance to the Little League World Series. But early Monday morning, while he was sleeping, Easton fell from a bunk bed in the team’s dorm in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, and fractured his skull.
Easton’s dad, Jace, who is an assistant coach on the team, said, “There was a lot of blood in his brain and a lot of pressure being caused. He had what was called an epidural hematoma. He fractured his skull and in the meantime punctured an artery outside the brain which caused the bleeding.”
In the three days since the accident and emergency surgery, the family has experienced an outpouring of love and they have seen miracles.
“We have received so many prayers on Easton’s and the family’s behalf,” Spencer Beck, Easton’s uncle who is acting as family spokesman told LDS Living on Wednesday. “There is strength in prayer and we are feeling it. We are sad and don’t know why it happened. But there is no doubt that Heavenly Father has blessed Easton throughout this process. From the one boy who woke up when Easton fell out of bed to the nurse on duty that night who used her faith and expertise to make the immediate call to 911.
“We are blessed that his dad was there because he was coaching, blessed to have a helicopter available to immediately get him to the children’s hospital, blessed for the surgeons and their staff who were there and ready to operate, and blessed that his dear mom and uncles could travel safe and quickly to be there with Easton and his dad. We have witnessed miracle after miracle and we know it is due to the faith of all those praying.”
Easton’s father, Jace, has expressed a strong belief in the power of prayer.
“I’ve always been a firm believer of prayer and the power that comes with it, and I feel like people continue to rally around us that he will make a full recovery,” Jace said in an interview with Cache Valley Daily.
As of August 18, a Facebook page sharing updates on Easton’s health says he has been moved out of the ICU, has been sitting up in a chair, has been communicating more, drank and fed himself, and was able to stand up and take two steps with support.
The family is grateful for the prayers that have been said and asks that they continue to be offered.
“Easton is continuing to recover step by step so keep those prayers coming,” Beck said.
There is no doubt that the Snow Canyon Little League team, which includes several Latter-day Saints, will have a lot weighing heavy on their little hearts as they take the field for their first game of the World Series on Friday, but they are playing for a great purpose now.
“As a team preparing for the Little League World Series, Coach O (Oliverson) expressed his desire for Team Utah to finish what we started and compete and enjoy this amazing experience. While our hearts are heavy, we are committed as a team to have an opportunity to take part in something that is only dreamt about by others,” a statement published by the team said. “We teach our players to do everything with a purpose—that hasn’t changed. It has perhaps been added to with something far greater than ever. We believe in Team Utah. We believe in Team Easton.”