Gulfport Firefighter’s Road to Recovery

The resilience of a Gulfport firefighter keeps his spirits up while recovering from a near-death experience that happened just two weeks ago. News 25’s Laurene Callander introduces us to the man who was pinned against a brick wall by a fire truck and thought it was the end.
Watching fellow firefighters load up the truck is not easy for Mark Headrick. When a new driver was backing up the fire truck over two weeks ago, Headrick noticed the vehicle getting too close to the station. Using his instincts, he leaned in to alert the driver but within seconds his head was pinned against the brick wall. “I’m pretty sure that he saw what was happening and that’s when he stopped the truck. If he hadn’t stopped the truck, I wouldn’t be here,” said Headrick.
Headrick spent four days at the LSU Medical Center in New Orleans. For five of those hours, doctors performed surgery on his broken jaw. The right side of his face suffered permanent nerve damage and for now he cannot chew his food. “I heard it crack. I knew it messed up my jaw ‘cause like I said I got a plate here, I got one here and I got two down here and I got all the braces going across.”
Even though there’s no telling when Mark is going to come back to work, he is not hanging up his equipment just yet. As soon as he gets cleared medically, he wants to come back to Fire Station 5. “The best decision I ever made was becoming a firefighter,” said Headrick.
Brenda Headrick, Marks’ wife, said, “He’s always clowning and having a good time and I think that’s important for healing, just having that positive attitude and that’s what he’s had through this whole thing.”
There’s no telling how long Headrick’s road to recovery will last but with the overwhelming support he receives from his wife and friends on Facebook plus contributions and donations from the community, he hopes to be back in the driver’s seat in no time.

Categories: Local News, News

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