Mother begs for help finding driver who hit her son

Halen Doughty
Tate Adkins, who is fighting for his life after being struck in a hit-and-run accident.

A grieving mother says she will stop at nothing until she finds the person who nearly killed her son in a Prairieville hit and run. Deborah Adkins Comeaux said her son, Tate Adkins, 24, of Geismar, was seriously injured when he was hit by a vehicle while walking on an I-10 overpass.

According to Louisiana State Police, Adkins was hit by a passing vehicle sometime between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. on the La. 74 overpass just east of La. 73. An arrest has not been made in the case, and authorities say the investigation is ongoing. Louisiana State Trooper Bryan Lee, who handles public information for Troop A offered no additional information at this time.

Comeaux said when Adkins was taken to Our Lady of the Lake hospital in Baton Rouge, doctors wanted to pull the plug on her son, who was in a coma and on life support at the time. She said she begged doctors to give him Omega 3 fish oil because she had researched its effects on other patients with similar brain injuries.

She's convinced that is what saved his life because after giving him the fish oil through his feeding tube on December 20, her son awoke from his coma on Christmas Eve. By December 28, he was sitting up in a chair. Although Adkins still cannot speak and has limited mobility, his mother said he is able to communicate using sign language.

Even amid the tragedy of what happened that night on the interstate overpass, Adkins still has his sense of humor. Comeaux said he enjoys pressing the call button because the nurses, knowing how bad his condition is, come running into the room. Adkins gets a huge kick out of that, his mother said, and he has a good laugh over the joke.

As hard as it is for a mother to see her son so badly injured, dealing with the legal issues that follow a traumatic brain injury has been just as frustrating for Comeaux. She said because Adkins is an adult, his official next of kin are his siblings, not his mother. She said it's been a challenge trying to get legal power of attorney over him so that she can make medical decisions for her son.

Additionally, a fundraising goal of $10,000 has been created on for medical expenses.

New HIPPA laws also prevent many of Adkins' doctors from speaking with Comeaux because of privacy protections. She broke down while explaining that some of his doctors cannot share information with her, which makes the situation all the more unbearable.

Comeaux is currently working to get power of attorney over her son and doing everything imaginable to help him recover as best he can. She encourages young adults to give their parents medical power of attorney in case of stations like this. No family, she said, should have to deal with these issues when their child is suffering.

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