Derick from Hampton

I was working in a shipyard, blasting the area with a water jet when the gun got jammed. The water hit my foot, causing lacerations – it was pretty bad.

I hit an artery. When the water jet cut across my foot, I almost lost a toe. I had one surgery, but the swelling was so bad that the doctors didn’t even notice that my tendons were torn, so I had to go in for another surgery. In the end, I had to get 4 rods and 28 pins in my foot. I have constant pain, and tingling from nerve damage. I can’t bend all of my toes. Even with rehab and podiatrists, it has permanently changed the way I walk. I used to be athletic and involved with sports, but I’ve had to give up that part of my life.

But I’m grateful nothing had to be amputated, and I’m grateful that I got to work with Jennifer. We are like brothers and sisters. She was so supportive of me, and so was Ms. Kelly. We all have a bond. I knew nothing going into this, and they answered all my questions. I felt supported. I have a lot of love for Mrs. Capocelli – she is like family.