'Courageous' teen crash victim gets prosthetic leg
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -
For Justin Carey, it was a milestone day.
Almost three months after being struck by a car on the side of a Clark County road, the Battle Ground High School junior received his prosthetic leg and began the process of learning to walk on it Tuesday.
On the morning of June 10, Carey was waiting for his bus in a rural part of Clark County when a car hit him.
The driver, Shaun Johnson, didn't tell authorities she had hit someone, so Carey laid injured in a ditch for 90 minutes before a tow truck driver found him.
When a LifeFlight helicopter took him to the hospital, he was in critical condition.
"He's definitely courageous. I don't think any kid could go through this and be as strong as him," said Janette Chumley, Carey's mom.
Carey suffered two broken legs, and doctors told him the right one would likely never heal.
So Carey and his family decided to remove that leg from the knee down.
"It was definitely, definitely the hardest decision that we've ever had to make as parents," Chumley said.
After weeks of physical therapy and rehab, Carey finally got to try out his new leg on Tuesday, and he managed to sit, stand and walk after just a couple of tries.
"I got goose bumps. It was so exciting. I'm so proud of him. You could just see in his expression when he stood up and took those first steps forward, his face - it's surreal," Chumley said.
Chumley said the words "strength" and "courage" come to mind; but most of all, "inspiration."
"Some of my friends have even told me that kind of stuff. It makes me feel warm inside. Good about myself," Carey said.
So what's next?
"I haven't really figured that out yet, but hopefully something good," he said.
The Clark County Sheriff's Office said no charges have been filed against the driver, but this is still an active investigation.
Meanwhile, who says his dream was to join the Air Force, will be sworn in as an honorary member of the Washington Air National Guard at Camp Murray.
Copyright 2013 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
Thursday, July 31 2014 11:57 AM EDT2014-07-31 15:57:19 GMT
As the town of Dundee and countless different law enforcement agencies continue in their search for Jennifer Huston, a local PI is weighing in on the case with his own theories.More >
As the town of Dundee and countless different law enforcement agencies continue in their search for Jennifer Huston, a local PI is weighing in on the case with his own theories about what happened to the mother.More >