On September 23, 2015, while installing internet in New Carlisle, Indiana John Richardson was electrocuted by a set of high power lines.
“I sustained major burns on my neck and feet where the electricity passed through”, stated John. “Paramedics airlifted me to St. Joseph Hospital in Fort Wayne and I spent the next couple of months in recovery. The worst of the injuries inflicted my feet, especially my right side. After spending weeks at home trying to heal, we had to make the decision to amputate my right leg below the knee in November”.
“The transition to home after amputation brought on new challenges. In one respect, I felt relief that I had the surgery and I no longer had to care for a dying limb. On the other hand, getting around was much harder to do on crutches, but I was challenged to get out and continue my life as normally as I could. I returned back to work the following January before I received my first prosthesis. It seemed like the only thing I could think about was getting a new leg!”
“I first heard about SRT Prosthetics from another burn victim in the hospital. Throughout the course of our relationship with SRT, my wife and I have come to realize that we couldn’t have found a better place for our newfound needs. I am so fortunate that I have been able to receive the best quality in prosthetics available. Without SRT, I wouldn’t have progressed as fast as I have. The friends I have made at this company constantly encourage me to set new goals and help me attain them”.
“I remember attending my first Amputee Walking School at the Turnstone Center in Fort Wayne. I didn’t know what to expect. It was nice to meet other people who have experienced the same struggles and who have overcome them with good attitudes. I also appreciated the genuine interest that Todd Schaffhauser and Dennis Oehler (the instructors) took in each and every attendee. I think it’s awesome that there are programs out there like this. I keep coming back because of the great atmosphere and I always learn something new”.
John works at Surf Air Wireless in La Porte, Indiana. Prior the accident, he installed internet lines as a field technician, and he is now in inventory management and special projects.
“I work in the office, making sure the field technicians have everything they need to complete their daily jobs. I also do customer service and tier two support”, said John.
“Maintaining a proper fit in my prosthetic leg makes a huge difference in my daily productivity and attitude. Even the smallest improvement can make a great impact. With the quality of care that I have received at SRT, I have been able to get answers to my questions and every problem is resolved no matter how small. They have lobbied on my behalf to get the best suspension system possible to keep me moving. We as amputees depend so much on a good leg, so having the right prosthetists, like the ones at SRT, makes all the difference”.
“The Ossur Pro-flex is the foot I wear on a daily basis. I love it. As a 25-year-old, I am very active and the Pro-flex has enabled me to continue and thrive in my active lifestyle”, said John. “I often find myself crossing uneven terrain and using a foot with optimal ankle flexion that allows me to run, jump, hike and get back to doing what I love. Plus, aside from the functionality, it just looks down-right awesome!”
John continued by saying, “SRT and Ossur recently fit me with a carbon fiber running blade (the Cheetah) and I couldn’t be more excited! I am still learning how to use it to its full potential, but it is such a liberating feeling knowing that I can run again. I run on the treadmills at the gym nearly every day, and on other days, I strap it on and run down the streets in my neighborhood. I love it because running is one of the most grueling and exhilarating things in the world”.
“To any new amputee, I would like to say, “Take your time. Be patient with your body. Your mind wants to go, go, go, but it takes a long time for your body to get used to these new circumstances. It is easy to get discouraged about your progress, but never give up and rejoice in the little victories. You are going to have good days and bad days with your leg, but learn that as much as you can, ask a bunch of questions. Don’t Quit! There is a great community of overcomers who are cheering you on!”
SRT is ecstatic to share John’s amazing story in hopes that his astounding attitude and motivation could be contagious to the amputee community.