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Katy Teen in ICU Opens Eyes, Talks to Parents


January 5, 2021

By Natalie Cook Clark

The Katy community continues to rally behind a local teen and his family as the 17-year-old fights to recover from a horrible car accident. Sam Mills remains in the ICU, but his parents report that he has opened his eyes and has spoken to them.

Sharing Updates

The Mills family is keeping the Katy community and beyond updated on the progress of their son Sam.

“We debated about having a public Facebook page for updates but decided it would be the best way to keep everyone updated," says Sam's father, Rick Mills. "We live in the public eye with football and cheer so people know us.”

Good News from Sam's Parents

“My baby said ‘Mom’ last night,” says Carrie Mills. “Praise the Lord my God is good.”

Rick added this news today: "Later this morning he asked the nurse to take out the trash because it was starting to stink!"

Sam opened both of his eyes and acknowledged his parents when they were talking to him.

"He knows where he is and asked me how much longer until he can leave," says Rick. "He said, 'I need to get back to school and I can walk I promise!!'”

Angels by his Side

Around 10:30 p.m. on December 26, Samuel or “Sam” Mills was driving home after his shift at the Pin Oak Chick-fil-A when he lost control of his vehicle and it flipped. He was ejected from the car resulting in severe head trauma that has left him fighting for his life.

Sam wasn’t alone in those moments before paramedics arrived. Two couples witnessed the scene and stopped.

“They didn’t just call 911,” says Rick. “They prayed for him. They had military backgrounds, football families, Christians.”

Sam was life-flighted to Memorial Herman Hospital in the Medical Center.

The Mills family has since met with the people who were there for Sam on the night of the accident. Jordan Farmer and his wife came to the hospital, while Antonio Fielder and his wife met them at their midtown apartment and gave a gift.

“They made room in their hearts for us,” says Rick of their kindness and support. “God led them to us.”

Once the family didn’t think Sam would make it. Now he is showing his strength and faith as he demonstrates signs of improvement.

Updates Show Improvement

“He slept well last night,” says Rick. “A little agitated and confused but normal for coming out of a coma.”

Sam had his neck brace removed this morning but still hasn’t opened his eyes.

“Yesterday was amazing,” shares Rick. “It was supposed to be a day of rest but his physical therapist came in and Sam tried to get up.”

“It was the first time he had spoken clearly in a week,” says Rick. “180 degrees difference from the day before. His nurse had said they’ve never seen someone turn around this quickly."

The Mills say that the doctors, nurses, and staff have been incredible. Originally, they were told Sam could only have one visitor per 24-hour period. Rick and his wife, Carrie have been allowed to switch out to be with their son.

“You really see that Southern hospitality,” says Rick. “Yes, COVID is a hindrance but as long as we are following precautions, washing hands, etc. then we are fine.”

The Mills family is grateful for the incredible community support. Sam is a receiver for the Tompkins varsity football team, and the team moms were the first to reach out making donations and supplies. They have provided meals and funds to cover the parents’ parking and hotel bills.

Their rival football team, the Katy Tigers also jumped into action making a donation as well.

Thankful for Support

“My wife said, you know God is at work when the Katy Tigers donate to a Tompkins football player,” says Rick.

Support and encouragement for Sam has come from teams outside of Katy, too. Football players from Oklahoma University, Oklahoma State University, and the University of Texas have sent videos of encouragement to Sam.

While Sam isn’t fully aware of all of the support he is getting at this time, his mom has been playing the videos for him to hear.

The Mills family’s Katy church, Second Baptist, has also shown support for Sam and the family.

“They have really taken us under their wing, especially Sam’s youth pastor Mitch,” says Rick.

Sam is one of five children. Rick says, “They are going through a roller coaster of emotions.”

The Mills Family. Photo credit: Carrie Mills

Joshua, the Mills oldest son, is home from his break from Dallas Baptist University. Sam’s twin, Ryan, wants to be there by his brother’s side so he can hear his voice. Daughters Abigail and Hannah are staying busy and occupied while following their brother’s progress.

“We are very grateful for all the support and encouragement,” says Rick. “With five children we couldn’t do this without help.”

“We are praying for a great day of healing, patience, and for my other four kids as they return to school,” says Rick.

Follow Sam’s journey and see how you can support the Mills family on their Facebook page.


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