It was a busy day at the salon, and Jada Guy was styling three clients when she noticed she had missed two calls from one of her son’s friends. Two more clients were waiting, so she didn’t think much about the missed calls, until her daughter called shortly thereafter with the devastating news that Jada’s son, JJ, had been in a serious accident.
I was the first day of summer break for JJ, and he was playing video games when his friends knocked on the door. He was planning to get a job that summer, while continuing his mixed martial arts training. Based on the advice of his guidance counselor, he was also thinking about taking a college course over the summer, but all those plans fell to the back of his mind that day when his friends said they should go “freerunning.”
Freerunning encourages participants to see urban environments as obstacle courses that invite running, climbing, swinging and vaulting over these “obstacles” to perform inventive acts of athleticism.
JJ and his friends headed to an abandoned warehouse. They didn’t notice the warning signs about live electrical wires when entering through the back fence by the train tracks. JJ was the first one to climb to the top of the warehouse.
“I was really excited,” he says. “I couldn’t wait to get started.”
JJ had a small grappling hook on his chest to help him perform stunts, and as he ran across the roof of the warehouse, it snagged a power line. “I wasn’t really scared,” he says now. “I was just trying to get it unhooked.” That’s when 23,000 volts of electricity came jolting through the grappling hook, passing through JJ’s right hand and going out through his left leg. “I didn’t realize I was being electrocuted until I couldn’t move my hand away from the grappling hook,” JJ says.
Suddenly, an explosion blew JJ off the roof of the warehouse to the ground, shattering his kneecap. JJ remembers waking up with his friends around him. “One of my friends was calling my name and snapping,” JJ says. “He was trying to keep me awake.”
Finally, the ambulance arrived to rush JJ to Regional One Health where they would have to amputate his right arm below the elbow and his left leg, because the tissue had been destroyed. When JJ saw his family at Regional One Health, he recalls, “Everyone was shocked that I was still alive.”
AS SOON AS I RUSHED THROUGH THE DOORS OF REGIONAL ONE HEALTH, I FELT LIKE THERE WAS A HOSPITAL FULL OF ANGELS WORKING TOGETHER TO SAVE MY SON’S LIFE.
JJ healed quickly, and his recovery is going well. He’ll be fitted for his prosthetics soon. He can’t wait. “Once I’m trained on how to use my prosthetics,” he says, “I’m going to stand at the school entrance at the end of the day, and just show everybody that I’m okay.”
“He’s back to his normal self,” his mother, Jada says, smiling. “I feel very proud of him. He’s even stronger than before. He’s able to do everything that he did before the accident, but only now with one leg and one hand. It’s amazing.”
“It’s a miracle that my child is still here, so I can share my life with him,” Jada says.
MY SON IS ALIVE AND WELL TODAY BECAUSE OF THE EXPERT CARE HE RECEIVED AT REGIONAL ONE HEALTH.
Jada Guy is extremely grateful for supporters like you who helped make it possible for Regional One Health to save her son’s life.