About a month ago I was in this building attending a 'Limb Loss Luncheon', met some amazing people. One of them being Al Roger of Carencro. Al impressed me on many fronts: his courage, his realization, and his drive to keep on living.
"Hell, yes, sir; i was scared because you have no idea what you're gonna do, what you're gonna be able to do," recalls Roger. "You in the hospital, the first thing you've got to do is try to brush your teeth or something like this. That's when you come to the reality that it's never gonna be the same again."
July 4th, 2013, and Al Roger does what he'd done a thousand times before. Only this time, he reached into his hay baler and got his right arm caught, and tangled and crushed among three rollers. He hung there for two hours, but found the strength to call his neighbor for help.
"I had a flip phone, flipped it open and found her, I called her, 'Vicky, come quick I'm hung in my hay baler" she said. "'Quit --I see you.' I said, 'Yes, but I'm hung in the baler, come quick."
But when emergency personnel arrived, they were shocked.
"You know you're in pretty bad shape when the rescue people say, 'Hmm, how we gonna get him out of there?' says Roger. "Now you know you're in trouble, you know?"
Roger lost his right arm at the elbow, was in the hospital for 19 days, and in his own words, he was a basket case. "And sometimes, you get to the point where you say, 'Is this worth it?' Suicidal thoughts? Yeh, you will have that, too."
There was an extremely painful rehab, plus skin grafts to replace burnt skin; but something--someones--maybe a all-important someone kept him going.
"Thank God for friends. The good Lord put a hand in that, and I got out of that."
He resumed his life as a farmer.... works 150 head of cattle and hundreds of acres of land... and day after day, continues to beat the odds.
"You feel like you're down, but if you don't give up, there's always a will, there's always a way, there's always somebody to help you," suggests Roger.
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