Seeking Recovery

Jesse and Felicia Engles with sons, Brighton, Slade and Cru.

Jesse Engles, a husband and father of three young boys, ages 3, 6, and 8, unexpectedly underwent back-to-back brain surgeries Jan. 18-19.

On the morning of Jan. 18, his wife, Felicia, found Mr. Engles unresponsive, so she called emergency services to rush him to the hospital. There, they discovered his brain was swollen and spinal fluid filled within his head, pushing into his spinal cord (hydrocephalus).

During the first surgery, tubes were inserted to release the fluid. He was then transported to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville to undergo another brain surgery to remove a cyst that was pressing on his second and third ventricle on his brain. The cyst was successfully removed, but recovery will be a long road.

The Engles family moved to New Smyrna Beach 10 years ago to open up a family business pizza shop. While Panheads Pizza was successful, the Engles re-evaluated their life 10 months ago when Ms. Engles grandmother died, and the next day her father.

They decided they wanted to be around for their children more often. So they walked away from the restaurant and Mr. Engles pursued construction projects. The boys, Brighton, Slade and Cru, are now homeschooled by Ms. Engles.

Mr. Engles was building a new home for his family. In order to help finish the house and get a certificate of occupancy, their friends came from Boston, Virginia Beach, Tallahassee and Miami while Mr. Engles was undergoing surgery.

He is expected to make a full recovery, but is having short-term memory loss and won’t be able to work for a while as he takes on memory and physical therapy. Friends created a gofundme page for donations to help the family until he can get back to work at

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