holiday hope for the Loduhas
The year 2020 has been a difficult one for most of us. From the election and the rift in society that we have seen, to the COVID-19 virus, it has been a particularly unkind year to us. But for one particular member of our jet ski family, it has been especially hard! It is our goal for the last portion of this year to give the Loduha family a helping hand and to help mend the rift in our society by having a good common cause to rally behind. Nobody is quite as deserving of such a cause as Steven Loduha!
Steven Loduha served our country in the United States Army for 21 years! During this time, he went on multiple tours to countries like Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan and more. As a man in such a position, he has fought to protect others as well as their freedoms. Steven experienced many frightening things during that time, like being shot at, hit by an IED, and other things that have been left unsaid.
But, in all that turmoil and in those times of war, he always found a way to fight back the darkness, and come home safe! Always returning home to his wife Dawn and their son, Steven is nothing short of a fighter.
Living in Washington, Steven and Dawn became friends with many, which has been evident in the last few months that he has fought towards some semblance of a recovery. A few friendships spanned into the Westcoast Surf Riders group, great people like Dan Lindgren and Anthony Bellanca, who are involved in the jet ski community, and he himself got into the sport as well. Finding a similar camaraderie and support as the days of his service with fellow vets, water sports and the jet ski community had a special pull on him.
Earlier this year, Steven invested in a new ski, and built it up to be exactly what he wanted! Brandon, our co-founder here at H2O Industries, spoke with Steven during this time, and he helped us with the fitment details on a few skis. It is often times that we have developed some of our strongest friendships and bonds to members of the community in this exact fashion, and Steven was no different. We were looking forward to Grayland Open, and getting to spend time with him and others at that event. Unfortunately his accident occurred a few weeks prior to the event.
On July 31, 2020, Steven, his wife Dawn, and a few friends went out to enjoy a day on the water. Nobody knew what that fateful day had in hand for the future of the Loduha family. That afternoon, Steven dove into the water, where he met an unknown object headfirst. What ensued can only be imagined as a frightening and disheartening experience, as Dawn fought hard to keep the love of her life alive until emergency crews could arrive.
The analysis of the doctors and the procedures following were focused around the C6 vertebrate, which had been shattered and punctured the spinal column. A series of surgeries led to the vertebrates C4-T1 being fused and held together with plates and screws which has left Steven without the use of his legs.
As a true testament to this family’s awesome sense of humor and fighting spirit, the same hardware that has saved Steven’s life is being referred to as Steven’s “Aftermarket Parts”, in correlation to his love for power sports and upgrades.
From there it has been a long and difficult road for this family. With many priorities changing, they have had to sell many items that were previously a large part of their family time. The jet ski that he had purchased just earlier this year had to be sold. Also on the chopping block was a motor home that they also purchased this year in the spirit of many fun camping trips to come and family time and memories to be created. The last and probably most difficult item to sell was their own home, as it was not going to be a friendly environment to Steven’s new needs.
Steven has stayed in a hospital up until very recently, when he was released just last week, on November 6th, 2020. They are now in an apartment which will suit Steven’s wheelchair and needs better than their home. Many, many hard months of recovery and physical therapy are in Steven’s future, but he looks forward with an optimistic heart and a determined spirit.
We here at H2O Industries are adamant that we must give back to the community and the people who support us! We feel strongly that Steven is the most deserving of every ounce of help that we can give him! Please help us to give back, and to have a lasting and powerful effect on some lives that could use all the love that our wonderful community can offer!
**ALL PROCEEDS ARE GOING TO BE GIVEN DIRECTLY TO THE LODUHA FAMILY. WE WILL ALSO ABSORB ALL CREDIT CARD TRANSACTION FEES SO THAT EVERY DIME DONATED GOES DIRECTLY TO STEVEN AND HIS WIFE IN THIS TIME OF NEED.