Upon graduating high school, I married the love of my life, my high school sweetheart, Diana, and enlisted in the United States Navy. After over 30 years of serving in the Navy, moving around the world, and building a beautiful family with Diana, we decided it was time to retire and move to our happy place; Hawaii.
While I was stationed in Germany in June of 2019, Diana and I were getting ready to make our move to Hawaii when I suddenly felt a severe burning sensation in my back and legs. As someone who served in the Navy, I’ve felt pain before, but this felt different. I couldn’t move yet couldn’t sit still. All I knew was that I was in excruciating pain and I needed to go to the hospital.
When I finally got to the hospital, we quickly realized that I was in worse condition than we anticipated. My organs were shutting down, blood was pooling in my chest, and I needed to be transported to another hospital about an hour and a half away.
Shortly after arrival, I was placed in the intensive care unit (ICU) and put into an induced coma. According to my doctors, I only had a 10 percent chance of coming out of a coma, and if I did, my chances of survival were slim. It breaks my heart to know my family flew out to Germany from the United States to say their goodbyes. It breaks my heart to know my wife received my wedding ring in a cup at the hospital. It breaks my heart that this was almost their new reality.
Finally, after 14 days of being in the ICU, I was stable enough to be brought out of a coma. Before I knew it, I was being transported back to the United States via the MedEvac. After landing safely at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, I was then taken to Walter Reed’s Wounded Warrior Ward for further treatment. But my journey was far from over.