Family set for ‘whatever it takes’ to aid Ga. Tech student’s recovery

While a senior at Kell High School, Clark Jacobs took college calculus classes and got a 98 in both, his mother said. (Family photo)

While a senior at Kell High School, Clark Jacobs took college calculus classes and got a 98 in both, his mother said. (Family photo)

Clark Jacobs’ second grade teacher gave him a nickname and it stuck. Superman.

Sure, it was the obvious choice for a boy named Clark. But with the 20-year-old now recovering from a traumatic injury, “Superman” Jacobs faces a long flight back to his life as a Georgia Tech student.

“Whatever it takes, however long it takes, we certainly are not going anywhere,” Mariellen Jacobs, Clark’s mother, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Clark, a second-year mechanical engineering student, is known for his witty sense of humor and smarts. He was asleep in the Kappa Sigma fraternity house early Jan. 10 when he fell from his loft bed to the floor, his family said. He remembers crawling back up into his bed and going back to sleep. When Clark woke up, he was vomiting, and his father picked him up and brought him to the family’s Acworth home.

His neck was stiff and he had a headache, but he wasn’t complaining.

“Clark is notoriously stoic about things,” his mom said Tuesday.

The next day, Mariellen Jacobs said she was more concerned, fearing that her son possibly had meningitis. It was time to take a trip to the emergency room.

“Oh mom!” she remembers Clark saying.

At WellStar Kennestone Hospital, a CT scan helped doctors diagnose Clark. And it was the last thing anyone was expecting.

Despite being lucid and not even having a bump on his head, Clark had a fracture at the base of his skull.

“It’s so difficult to fracture your skull in that area,” the mother of two said. “The ER doctor was even shocked.”

Clark underwent emergency brain surgery due to bleeding, his mother said. On Jan. 27, Clark was moved to Atlanta’s Shepherd Center, where he has remained since. For weeks, the 2013 Kell High School graduate has battled various infections, and he is only minimally conscious, his mother said.

Doctors and his family, including his dad and older sister, are optimistic that Clark can live up to his superhero status and make a full recovery. It’s not known how long the recovery could take, but the family is prepared, his mother said. For weeks, his family has rotated shifts to be with Clark.

“He gives us thumbs up and squeezes our hands,” Mariellen Jacobs said. “He’s still in there, it’s just a process of getting him back out.”

The family has been amazed at the support from friends and even strangers, and credits that support with being able to make it this far through the ordeal. Mariellen Jacobs said while at Shepherd, she’s been visited by the mother of Emily Bowman, who continues to recover since being struck by a drunk driver more than two years ago.

The Jacobs family has medical insurance, but it will not cover all of the expenses of Clark's recovery. A Go Fund Me page ( was set up to assist the family with costs. Any help is appreciated, along with positive thoughts of healing for Clark.

“He’s just a huge part of my family,” his mother said. “He’s hilarious, super fun and has so many great friends. We miss his personality.”