Tazewell woman sustains brain injury, taken off life support

A Tazewell woman has left a community grieving her loss after a freak fall down a flight of basement steps left her with traumatic brain injuries. Brittany Procy spent nearly two weeks battling for her life in an Intensive Care Unit. Friends and family initially held out hope for her recovery, taking to Facebook to keep everyone updated.

Several posts on July 2 called for prayer when her condition spiraled. About a week later, Procy was taken off life support and given medical comfort with no lifesaving measures in place.

The stay-at-home mother of five was engaged to Jeremy Carmack, whose July 10 Facebook post follows:

“I know I haven’t posted anything yet because I think I’ve just been out of it, but this girl right here was my heart, my love, my strength and everything I could ask for and more. She showed me what love was and was going to spend the rest of my life with her. We had a lot of it all planned out.

“I hate this so much. I am so broken without you Brittany Procy. I am trying so hard to stay strong but I keep falling apart more and more every day. I wish I could see you and hug you and see that amazing smile you had and here you say ‘I love you’ one more time. So, if I tell anyone out there if your husband and wife, girlfriend, boyfriend – whatever it may be is going anywhere, hug and kiss them like it’s their last time you’ll ever see him because it just might be. I learned it the hard way and I would not want anybody else to learn that. Brittany, you will forever have a piece of my heart. I will always love you until I get to see you again my love.”

Michelle Holbrook, who is Procy’s mother, said her daughter loved to take photographs, was daring and had a great sense of humor.

Just a few days before the accident, Procy posted to her Facebook account a photograph of her pet ball python with a detailed explanation.

“Because a lot of people have a lot to say about my baby… no, he can’t nor will he try to eat or bite you. He couldn’t eat you even if he actually wanted to. He is a ball python. Yes he is a pet, matter of fact…the easiest pet I’ve ever had to take care of… have ever seen an aggressive ball python? No. Have I heard of them, yes. They have their own little personalities and learn the difference in individual heat patterns of people and other animals. Please do your research. I respect if you choose not to even try to understand this type of snake. I won’t put my snake on you nor will I try to force you to hold him. He is far too precious to jeopardize his safety or you hurting him. Do I trust other snakes? Absolutely not. Trust is earned. Please do your research before you jump to whatever silly conclusions you may come to,” reads the post.

Janice Earls Cope, Procy’s former mother-in-law, left a post on July 9 after learning that Procy would be taken off of life support.

“We remained close friends. She gave me two of my beautiful granddaughters, Zoie and Brynlee. I will forever be grateful for that.

“In the last conversation we had, she told me many things and thinking back it was like she sensed something was going to happen to her. She told me to make sure her girls were happy and I will do everything I can to make sure they are. They have a dad, Clint Walker, and stepmom, Samantha Walker, who love them dearly and I am confident they will take care of them. I have told them that they have more people than they know who love them and will always be here for them. She loved us and we loved her. She would’ve done anything for us. She would have fought a grizzly bear over Leroy Cope. I don’t understand why this has happened to the girls, her fiancé, Jeremy Carmack, Riley, Cloey, and Neyland and her family and friends but God has a plan and we will understand one day. I will miss you Brittany Procy. Rest in peace until we meet again,” reads the post.

Carmack says Procy will still “be here” through the gift of organ donation.

Her family has created a PayPal account to help pay medical expenses and funeral arrangements.

To donate, go to @helpbrittany2019.