A Hermiston man who was in a motorcycle crash on May 3 is still in the hospital recovering from a brain injury.

Nychal Gritz, 22, was injured in a single-vehicle crash outside of Stanfield. His father Jeff Gritz said in an email over the weekend that Nychal spent 12 days in Oregon Health & Science University Hospital’s intensive care unit in Portland before being transferred to the hospital’s trauma unit, where he remains.

Jeff said Nychal was “pretty unresponsive” the first few days due to swelling and bleeding in his brain (the East Oregonian originally reported he was awake during that time based on incorrect information released by the Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office). He is now walking and eating with assistance and his short-term memory is unpredictable but improving, Jeff said. He should be moving to a rehab facility soon.

“He has multiple facial fractures and skull fractures that are non-operable and will heal on their own,” he wrote on Saturday. “His biggest threat now is a small blood clot in his brain that is being medically treated, that could take up to several months. He should be discharged from the hospital early next week if he continues to improve over the weekend.”

Nychal was a star baseball pitcher for Hermiston High School and played for Blue Mountain Community College last year. Jeff said community members have inquired about being able to send letters or donations to help cover medical bills. Letters to Nychal can be sent to P.O. Box 356, Hermiston, OR 97838. People can donate to an account in Nychal’s name at Columbia Bank or search for “Nychal’s Medical Fundraiser” on Facebook.

“Nychal and our family are very thankful for family, friends and our Eastern Oregon communities that have reached out and sent prayers our way,” Jeff said. “We truly appreciate it.”


Reporter covering city government and economic development in Hermiston, Umatilla, Stanfield and Echo.

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