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Teacher Mark Schofield, seriously injured in a crash on Phuket

Phuket Motorcycle Crash Victim Flies Home to Canada

Saturday, October 12, 2013
PHUKET: Canadian teacher Mark Schofield flew home this week after spending a month in a Phuket hospital following a motorcycle crash.

''There's a huge sense of relief that we can all be by his side,'' his brother Scott Schofield told a newspaper in Nova Scotia.

The single-vehicle crash on September 6 left Mark in a coma for several days. He suffered head trauma, a broken eye socket, broken arms, a broken jaw and nerve damage.

Surgeons at Vachira Phuket Hospital in Phuket City gave him the thumbs up to fly on Wednesday, accompanied by a doctor and nurse from Phuket.

''The one thing that was a huge relief was he recognised me,'' Scott told the Chronicle Herald.

Mark is able to talk again now but like many Phuket motorcycle crash victims, he continues to suffer memory loss.

Parents Kathleen and Douglas flew to Phuket to be with Mark. So did his Korean wife, Rachel.

Mark taught at schools in Korea for seven years and was about to take up a two-year contract at a private school on Phuket when he crashed the motorcycle.

Scott says Mark has nerve damage in his left arm, has trouble swallowing, has had a tracheotomy and has lost about 12 kilos, but he can now see out of his left eye and is able to walk.

Rachel was expected to rejoin Mark in Canada after her sister's wedding, scheduled for November 1 in South Korea.

Mark had medical coverage through his employer, but the family soon found out his medical bills were not covered, the newspaper reported.

So far, $57,935 has been raised through more than 700 donations on a special website.

The Schofields were not keen to talk to the media when they were on Phuket but they have since issued a statement:

''Our family is humbled by the tremendous love and support expressed toward our son Mark. The generosity from family, friends and even strangers is overwhelming, and we appreciate all your continued love, thoughts and prayers. At this time we still do not have a clear picture about his long-term rehabilitation, but his initial recovery has been incredible and gives us a lot of hope to build upon. It is very heartening to know the type of support we have here in Nova Scotia, which extends throughout the world.

God bless, Douglas and Kathleen Schofield.''

A disproportionate number of expats are involved in motorcycle crashes on Phuket but precise numbers of fatalities and injuries are unknown.

The Phuket Public Health department, which once provided monthly updates in an effort to improve awareness, ceased releasing statistics in April last year.

Phuketwan supports the Mothers or Motorcycles (MoM) road safety awareness campaign and 100 percent helmet usage for motorcycle riders.

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