09/06/2011 3:31PM

Paralyzed jockey Martin scheduled for tracheotomy


Jockey Jacky Martin, who was paralyzed from the neck down in a spill Friday, was scheduled to undergo a tracheotomy at University Medical Center in El Paso, Texas, on Tuesday, his wife, Tracey Martin, said. She also said Tuesday that she is in the process of making arrangements to transfer her husband to a rehabilitation facility near Denver.

“Social services has started getting things in motion,” she said.

The tracheotomy will enable Martin, who was placed on a respirator Sunday, to talk and eat, said Tracey Martin. The breathing tube had initially been inserted in his mouth. Tracey Martin said the surgery was scheduled to last about 30 to 45 minutes.

The date of Jacky Martin’s move to Craig Hospital near Denver is still being determined. Tracey Martin had looked into several facilities and said Craig comes highly recommended by a number of people within the racing industry.

“I’ve gotten a lot of good feedback from folks that have been there, that have relatives or family friends there,” she said, adding that Craig is noted for both its physical treatments of trauma victims and its psychological support for patients.

Jacky Martin, 56, was injured in a race at Ruidoso Downs when his mount in a $6,500 maiden claimer for Quarter Horses fell after the wire and threw him to the ground. He was diagnosed with three neck fractures and multiple contusions around his spinal cord.

A special account to help with Jacky Martin’s medical expenses has been established through Fort Gibson State Bank in Fort Gibson, Okla. For more information, contact Susan Chapman at (918) 478-2437.

Martin had been scheduled to ride Ochoa in Monday’s Grade 1, $2.4 million All American Futurity. The horse won the race by 1 1/2 lengths in a result that was “bittersweet,” Tracey Martin said. Jacky Martin, who had been involved in the development of Ochoa, is a seven-time winner of the All American.