Dan, Heather, Jeremiah, Tory, Emma, Tye, Claire, Levi, Josie, Jane and Ethan

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Galats!

Dan and Heather

What an amazing and blessed year 2019 was for our family!  In July, after a three year term at Kijabe  Hospital in Kenya, we transitioned back to the U.S. for a time of furlough.  We are so grateful to be together again with our growing family and are seeing the answer to so many of our prayers over the years.  In 2020, Heather and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage as a testimony of God's continual faithfulness in our lives.  

The Galats!

Hard to believe that we are 11 in our family now (12 if you count our new granddog Hobbs). 

Jeremiah, Tory and Hobbs Galat

 Jeremiah and Tory are doing so well, and are now married almost 3 years after eloping in 2017.  They purchased their first home in May and are busy with school, work and a rapidly growing german shepherd puppy.  In June 2020, they plan to "formalize" their union with a wedding celebration in Alaska (where Tory is from).  We are looking forward to this special time together as a family!

Tye and Emma Dutcher 

Shortly after our return from Kenya, we discovered that Emma and her boyfriend Tye eloped on July 31, 2019, and are now husband and wife.  Although this was quite a shock for us, we see Tye as God's gift to Emma (and vice versa) and we love Tye (he is a perfect fit for our family).  He has an amazing testimony of God's grace after loosing his leg in an accident at age 12.  Determined not to let this define him, he started swimming and is now a member of the U.S. paralympic swim team.  Emma and Tye live in Phoenix, and we love regularly spending time with them.  

 Tye won the gold in the backstroke (and three other medals) at the PanAm games in Lima, Peru this summer.  He is currently training for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.  What we love about Tye is that he uses this platform as a way to share the gospel of Christ with many people.

Claire and her roommate Daria.  

Claire began at Princeton in the Fall and is discovering how challenging college is!  All last year, we  prayed that God would provide the perfect roommate for Claire, and He answered far above our expectations.  Daria is from Russia and is on the tennis team at Princeton. She is such a great friend for Claire!   

Heather and Levi 

Levi is now a sophomore in high school at Veritas Preparatory Academy here in Phoenix.  He greatly misses his friends and life at the Rift Valley Academy in Kenya but has been determined to integrate well into school in the U.S.  He played American football in the fall, and would have finished the season had we not discovered a scaphoid fracture from an injury he sustained several months earlier in Kenya.

 Levi had only mild wrist pain despite having a chronic scaphoid fracture.  He required open reduction and internal fixation of the fracture with vascularized bone grafting. 

 Ethan, Josie and Jane

And then there's the three little ones who keep Heather and I young, and perpetually active!  They are loved by everyone in our family.  

A recent total shoulder replacement I did on a patient with severe osteoarthritis

I (Dan) am halfway through my year-long fellowship in adult reconstruction (hip, knee and shoulder replacement) at the Mayo Clinic Arizona.  This has been an incredible learning experience for me, as I gain greater skills in these procedures including Mako robotic assisted surgery.  

We are so grateful for our friends and colleagues at Kijabe Hospital, Tenwek Hospital and within WGM. We are grateful for the years which God has given us in Kenya, and for the things which God has done in and through us.  We are grateful for the growth of the orthopaedic training programs at Tenwek, Kijabe and Soddo/CURE in Ethiopia through PAACS, and amazed that there are now 20 residents being educated in orthopaedics and discipled in Christian maturity.  We are also grateful for you who have been praying with us about the next steps for our family, and God is beginning to clearly show us the way!!  Stay tuned for more updates in the near future, but for now, know that our commitment remains to the healthy growth and development of the PAACS orthopaedic training programs in Africa.  

The PAACS graduates and residents are the future of orthopaedic surgery in Africa.  In my mind, the most strategic way to reach underserved populations (who have massive needs surgically and spiritually) is through these national surgeons. We do this by multiplying ourselves in these incredibly intelligent, skillful, committed, and godly surgeons, who will then pass their knowledge on to others who come after them.  What a privilege to invest in their lives in this way!

Would you consider a year end donation to help support the PAACS ortho residency programs?

May God richly bless you with grace and peace this Christmas and coming New Year!