A mere 10 days before starting college, Andrew suffered a broken neck while swimming.
Andrew suffered a broken neck at the hands of a poorly placed sandbar while swimming in the ocean. He was only 17 years old, and a mere 10 days from starting my first year at college. The incident left him with a spinal cord injury and paralyzed from the neck down, with very little chance to ever walk again.
Following being flown to Jefferson, undergoing multiple surgeries, enduring severe spinal shock, seizures, and 3 pulmonary embolisms, Andrew began his road to recovery at Magee. Andrew was starting ot give up hope of ever living a normal life again, but he had had not counted on just how spectacular the staff of nurses, aides, physicians, and therapists at Magee were. In Andrew's own words:
"I learned more about myself in my time at Magee than most men and women do in their entire lives. I was able to find strength I didn't know I had, and discover the person I truly was. And when the task seemed too difficult, and failure on the brink, I was lifted up by the loving arms of the people who worked there, my peers, and my family."
After discharge, Andrew was able to attend college the following year, and stayed at Hofstra University (Dr Fried's alma mater) for 3 semesters when he decided that he wanted to become a paramedic. Andrew currently works as a Paramedic with Virtua Health MICU.