New Middletown man battling West Nile virus back in U.S. - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

New Middletown man battling West Nile virus back in U.S.

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ALEXANDRIA, Va -

A New Middletown family is thankful that their father is now back on American soil. 

Karlo Franjko started showing symptoms of West Nile Virus while vacationing overseas but there was a question about how soon he could get back to the U.S. to be treated here. 

He arrived in Washington D.C. Tuesday night.

Now at a hospital in Virginia where his daughter lives, Karlo Franjko and his wife Zora are one step closer to coming home to New Middletown.

"It is a huge relief that they're finally back on U.S. soil," described their son Dan Franjko of Pittsburgh.

Dan is grateful that his father can now get the proper medical care here compared to Croatia.

"He seems to be doing as well as can be expected. He's getting a full medical workup right now at Inova Hospital Mount Vernon Virginia," he said.

During a vacation overseas, Karlo started showing symptoms of West Nile virus.

"He wasn't able to walk, he wasn't able to communicate," Dan said.

The community rallied around the family raising money to bring him back on an isolated medical evacuation flight. 

Thankfully a MRSA infection cleared, allowing Karlo to board a commercial plane on a stretcher. 
 
"He's making decent progress and we're really excited to see the accelerated progress he's going to have now that he's in the U.S.," his son said.

So the next step is an acute rehab center in Virginia for three to four weeks.

"Hopefully we'll get him back to Ohio here by Christmas time, that's the goal," Dan said.

The family also wants to thank everyone for their support and they feel that without it and all the prayers and God, this wouldn't have been possible.
 

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