UPDATE: Couple burned in crash suffer setbacks, can't see kids

Posted: Updated:
Couple have not been able to see kids
azfamily.com

MESA - It has been three weeks since a deadly plane crash near St. Johns.

The crash killed Doug Kinneard of Mesa, a longtime pilot and flight instructor. A Mesa couple survived but they remain in critical condition in the burn unit and have been separated from their four children.

3TV's Jared Dillingham caught up with family members at the hospital on Thursday for an update. Family members visit several times a day but Stephanie and Christian Nielson cannot move or talk so they are not well enough to see the people they miss the most, their four children.

The Nielsons, 27-year-old Stephanie and 29-year-old Christian, shared everything together including his love of flying so it is difficult for family members to see them kept apart in separate rooms. For the last three weeks their bodies have been struggling to heal in the burn unit.

Both suffered setbacks this week. Stephanie developed blood clots in her legs and in a lung and her skin grafts became infected and had to be replaced.

Christian had to have a breathing tube put back in and both are now heavily sedated.

The couple's four young children have not been to visit them and they are now living with Stephanie's family in Utah. They have reportedly been told they may be able to see their parents by Christmas but it is impossible to know for sure.

Christian's parents say they will continue their daily trips to visit their son who had wanted to fly since he was a little boy.

Healthcare costs into the millions and a fundraiser concert and the Mesa High School student council plans to hold a fundraiser.