SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Today marks two weeks since Great Bend men and close friends Michael Tysver and Cody Clark were severely injured in a pedicab accident in Scottsdale following the Fiesta Bowl.
Clark and Tysver were taken to Phoenix-area hospitals following the early morning Jan. 4 wreck. Clark remains in serious condition with severe head trauma at Maricopa Medical Center neurological unit in Phoenix and Tysver, who suffered a spine injury, was taken to Scottsdale Health Care Osborn Medical Center.
Joseph Spano, the 27-year-old Phoenix man who rear-ended the pedicab carrying Clark and Tysver, has been charged with two counts of aggravated assault, class three felonies, and three counts of endangerment, class six felonies. There could also be charges of driving under the influence, but those are pending the results of blood tests.
He was arraigned Thursday and remains in the Maricopa County Jail on a $7,500 bond.
The pedicab driver, Saipaia J. Tavake, 19, of Tempe, Ariz., was not seriously hurt. Spano was not injured.
In the meantime, all family members and friends of Clark and Tysver can do is wait.
“I’m not leaving him,” said Sandy Clanton, Clark’s mother. She, Clark’s younger sister and Clark’s father Todd Clark remain in Phoenix, at the 21-year-old’s side.
“We’re looking at housing down here,” she said. “We may move.”
Clark is still in a natural coma and is not responsive. “He opens his eyes a little, but that’s it,” Clanton said, adding he is the most severely injured patient at the hospital.
“He had a very, very severe head injury,” she said. When Spano hit the pedal-powered cab with his Ford sedan, he was going about 50 miles per hour, and Clark’s head hit the windshield post by the driver’s-side.
“We’re looking at a really long road,” Clanton said. He may be in a coma and/or bed ridden for months and then have to undergo rehabilitation.
“We’re still waiting for him to wake up,” she said. There are still a lot of tubes helping to sustain Clark.
But, he was fortunate to land at a facility with a neuro unit and surgeons who could handle his case. “An hour later and he wouldn’t have made it,” Clanton said.
“It’s a very slow process,” she said. This is why she is considering relocating.
“It is just too bad this happened,” Clanton said.
There are funds established at Landmark National Bank and Credit Union of America in Great Bend to help Clark and his family.
As for Tysver, he is out of the Scottsdale hospital, Clanton said. He is now in Wichita for rehabilitation.
The Tribune was unable to contact anyone close to Tysver to learn more.
“He’s been awake, and walking and talking,” she said.
Clark and Tysver had gone to the Kansas State University versus Oregon State game with two other friends. However, Clark and Tysver got separated from the others, Clanton said.
Their buddies saw the police lights, but didn’t learn about the accident until officers showed up at their hotel. The officers found Clark’s wallet with his hotel key card.