08/20/08 — McDonald, Evans are in the hospital

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McDonald, Evans are in the hospital

By Steve Herring
Published in News on August 20, 2008 1:51 PM

Mount Olive Mayor Ray McDonald Sr. and county Commissioner J.D. Evans of Dudley are patients at Wayne Memorial Hospital.

McDonald has been hospitalized since last Thursday, while Evans has been there since Aug. 5.

Meanwhile, Mount Olive Town Manager Charles Brown returned home Tues-day following a weekend stay at the hospital for cardiac testing.

Evans and McDonald could be released by the end of the week, family members said.

Evans has undergone surgery for a blockage in his intestines and, in an unrelated treatment, his esophagus was stretched.

McDonald is being treated for meningitis.

Evans' wife, Shirley, said that her husband had been planning the esophagus procedure for some time.

"He is improving," she said. "I hope we will be home by the end of the week."

Evans recently attended a national meeting of county commissioners in the Midwest. After returning home, he traveled to Los Angeles to visit a former student.

While at a ballgame, Evans became dehydrated and was treated at an emergency area at the ballpark, Mrs. Evans said.

She said family members had joked with him that he could not keep up with the "younger set."

During that time, he did not feel well and had not been eating properly or getting enough rest, she said.

Evans returned home from Los Angeles on Monday, Aug. 4. He attended the morning session of the commissioners' Aug. 5 session, but left early and returned home.

Wayne EMS was called to his Dudley home and Evans was transported to the hospital.

McDonald's wife, Norma Carole, said her husband had not felt well for some time particularly over the past two weeks preceding his hospitalization.

During that time, he was unable to keep his food down, she said. He complained of headaches and joint pain.

"He could hardly walk when he got here," she said.

He has also experienced some heart problems since being hospitalized. She said that has been treated and corrected.

She said McDonald had been taking antibiotics for several months before he was hospitalized and is receiving pain medication every three hours.

Because of an insect bite on his arm, one of the initial treatments was for Lyme disease and West Nile Virus.

However, a spinal tap indicated that he has meningitis--an inflammation of the tissue surrounding the spinal column

"I am not sure how long he will remain in the hospital," she said. "I was hoping he would be able to go home today (Tuesday). He has a lot of good doctors here. He has had very good care."

Brown said he begun feeling ill last Thursday and on Friday went to his doctor.

He said the doctor told him he heard an irregular heartbeat and wanted further testing.

Brown said he thought we would just go to the hospital on Monday, but his doctor said "no" and had him admitted on Friday.

Once at the hospital he was told the tests were not done on the weekends.

"So, I thought I could go home and come back on Monday," he said.

However, he was told he could not leave since he was hooked to a heart monitor. He also underwent some blood tests.

"Today (Tuesday) I had to swallow a fiber optic cable," he said.

Brown said that he suffered from rheumatic fever at age 5 and that left him with a "dripping" heart value.

He said it "was nothing to be concerned about," but doctors wanted to continue to monitor him.

"I am fine," he said.

Brown said he expects to return to work on Thursday.