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Parents of Elder Wells arrive at bedside after two long days following Brussels blast

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Elder Mason Wells was one of four LDS missionaries who were injured in the Brussels airport bombing on Tuesday, March 22. Wells has given multiple interviews with varying media outlets via Skype because he is unable to give face-to-face interviews because of the risk of germs. (Photo courtesy Kymberly Wells)

Elder Mason Wells was one of four LDS missionaries who were injured in the Brussels airport bombing on Tuesday, March 22. Wells has given multiple interviews with varying media outlets via Skype as he is unable to give face-to-face interviews because of the risk of germs. (Photo courtesy Kymberly Wells)

Kymberly Wells got to sleep in the Brussels hospital room with her son Elder Mason Wells after she and her husband, Chad Wells, flew from Salt Lake City to Paris on Wednesday evening.

“I can’t imagine not being here after finding out he literally has a large open wound in his ankle that needs a skin flap,” Wells said. “We are so glad we came when we did.”

In addition to the leg and foot injuries, Mason has third-degree burns on his right hand and other burns on his head and face. Today he is undergoing evasive and painful procedures on his hand, and Kymberly reached out to friends and family asking for prayers as Mason is in significant pain.

The Wells flew out with an LDS Church public relations representative. The parents of Mason’s companion, Elder Joseph Empey, flew out on Thursday but were delayed in Atlanta. The elders were two of four missionaries injured in the terrorist attack at the Brussels airport on Tuesday, March 22.

The Wells family prayers prior to parents Chad and Kymberly flying to France to see their son Mason. Mason's siblings wrote him letters for their parents to take him. (Photo by Jeanette Bennett)

The Wells family prays prior to parents Chad and Kymberly flying to Paris, France, to see their son Mason. Mason’s siblings wrote him letters for their parents to take him. (Photo by Jeanette Bennett)

The LDS Church facilitated seven interviews with Mason (while wrapped in white gauze) conducted by American and European news agencies. More interviews will take place with Chad and Kymberly outside the hospital.

Decisions about Mason’s recovery are ongoing and will likely include treatments in Brussels and then continued treatment in Salt Lake City when he’s stable enough to be transported.

Chad served an LDS mission to France and still speaks the language and has connections in the area.

“French local church leaders met us with chocolate croissants at the airport, which is what they give new missionaries when they arrive,” Kymberly said.

The Wells found out about the Brussels blast when Kymberly’s father called them at 5 a.m. Tuesday morning. He said the explosion was at the airport, which initially gave them comfort because they didn’t expect Mason to be at the airport as part of his daily missionary duties. Later they learned that as the zone leader, he was in the group transporting a sister missionary to fly out to the United States. All four missionaries were hurt in the explosion. Mason was taken to a separate hospital than the other missionaries and was mostly alone for the first 48 hours following the blast.

Chad and Kymberly talked to Mason twice before arriving at his bedside. During the first 3-minute conversation on Wednesday — facilitated by a generous Brussels anesthesiologist — Mason asked if his parents had received the email about his upcoming housing at the University of Utah. This somewhat lighthearted moment helped the family realize that Mason’s personality and intellectual functions were in tact.

A long two days ensued when the Wells family was inundated with media requests, logistical questions, phone calls from Utah’s top political leaders, hundreds of texts from friends, and counters full of food and flowers. When the flight plans were solidified, the Wells had about an hour to pack and get out the door. Their younger children wrote notes for their parents to give to Mason.

Chad, Kymberly and Mason Wells were also near the Boston Marathon finish line in 2013 when that blast exploded.

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4 Responses to "Parents of Elder Wells arrive at bedside after two long days following Brussels blast"

  1. Stefanie Richards says:

    I am so glad they could go be with Mason, we are all praying for all of them. They are such a wonderful family.

  2. Kristine Siler says:

    We are praying for a quick recovery! We love your strength and your example during this difficult time. My kids Levi 11, Kayla 9 & Brocklyn 6 are so sweet when they pray for you! Levi wants to be a missionary and be in the military to help teach and catch bad guys! Thanks for your quick wit it shows! We love you!

  3. Carolyn Chynoweth says:

    It is truly a miracle that the missionaries did survive this terrible bombing. Elder Joe Empey is one of my favorite missionaries as his parents are near and dear to my heart. He is a strong spirit. Elder Wells condition is devastating. My prayers go out to him as well as all the missionaries there. Elder Wells must be a strong spirit also.
    I send my love and concern to all the families.
    Prayers and Love,
    Carolyn Chynoweth

  4. Jennifer Dunn says:

    This is such a humbling time to see the see Spirite these missionaries have that have gone through a major traumatic experience yet they are filled with love and kindness and the pure love of Christ. You have taught and are teaching the world so much about faith, your faith in the Savior and about serving others. Your in my families thoughts and prayers. May you feel the love that is being sent your way. Your teaching people through out the world about the gospel by the way you are all handling this traumatic experience. I know my son is 17 and will leave in a year and a half for a mission where ever he is called to serve and for him to see you you all is a true example to him. May God Bless you

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