Couple shares story of hope a year after surviving home explosion

“If you can encourage people and lift people up and inspire them to keep going, we can create a community of caring ..."

Couple's story of hope after home explosion

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — July 9 is a date Kevin Bokun and his wife, Medley Zeigler, never will forget.

It’s the date on which their lives changed forever just three weeks after they got married.

That evening in 2019, their Bossier City home exploded and was engulfed in flames.

A still from a witness video provided to KSLA News 12 shows the moments after a fire ignited during an explosion at the Bodun home on July 9, 2019.
A still from a witness video provided to KSLA News 12 shows the moments after a fire ignited during an explosion at the Bodun home on July 9, 2019. (Source: Kevin Bodun & Medley Zeigler)

Medley, a Registered Nurse, and Kevin, a third-year medical student, were rushed to a local hospital with life-threatening burns.

“There’s always a tinge of pain from what we went through,” Medley said. “It just seemed unreal at the time, and it was almost certain we were going to die.”

According to a post on the Facebook support group Kevin and Medley’s Road to Recovery, Kevin was in the hospital for three weeks for treatment of second- and third-degree burns across 35 percent of his body.

He went through four surgeries and spent two days in the burn ICU.

Medley stayed in the hospital for nearly five months after enduring burns over 96 percent of her body.

Her chance of survival was slim.

“It all happened so fast, this nightmare, this dream collided into reality,” Medley added. “It’s shocking, it’s horrifying, it’s terrifying.”

Kevin and Medley had been married for just three weeks when their Bossier City home exploded.
Kevin and Medley had been married for just three weeks when their Bossier City home exploded. (Source: Kevin Bodun & Medley Zeigler)

She was in a medically induced coma for two weeks, spent three months in the burn ICU, underwent 27 surgeries and spent two additional months in a rehabilitation hospital.

“When I woke up, I was just so concerned about her survival, I was so desperate for her to live,” Kevin said.

“People use that phrase ‘fighting for your life,‘ but it’s 100 percent accurate,” Medley said.

The loving couple survived.

But, a year later, new challenges are presented each day for Kevin and Medley.

Medley takes a selfie in a mirror as she continues to recover from devastating burns to 96 percent of her body.
Medley takes a selfie in a mirror as she continues to recover from devastating burns to 96 percent of her body. (Source: Medley Zeigler)

“If we have one hand in the sunlight, we notice almost immediately, our skin is sensitive,” Kevin explained. “We’re not to go in direct sunlight for really a few years.”

However, the two are finding time for each other amid a flurry of medical appointments.

In fact, on June 15, they celebrated their first wedding anniversary with a quick trip to Galveston, Texas.

Despite their injuries, Medley and Kevin are very outspoken about their roller coaster ride of a medical journey. They frequently post pictures and share struggles and victories with the Facebook support group’s nearly 14,000 followers.

“I feel like we’ve been given a platform for a reason,” Medley said.

They also are dedicated to their faith and belief in God to sustain them during these turbulent times. A sentiment that is expressed often throughout their social media postings.

“We believe God hears us and he answers prayer,” said Kevin. “We stake our lives on this, He gives us peace, and that’s what we need.”

During a time of uncertainty for not just Medley and Kevin, but also for a world affected by a dangerous pandemic, this selfless couple wants their story of hope, perseverance and love to reach those who feel hopeless.

Medley's, which was after the fire charred their home.
Medley's, which was after the fire charred their home. (Source: Kevin Bodun & Medley Zeigler)

“If you can encourage people and lift people up and inspire them to keep going, we can create a community of caring and just love people,” Medley said.

“You matter, people care about you, people love you.”

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