MIAMI (CBSMiami) – It looked like any typical day at Ryder Trauma Center.
A mix of doctors, surgeons, physical therapists, and first responders were standing around but the reason they are all here Wednesday morning is unlike any other typical day.
The reason was Jonathan Cruz, who last Father’s Day was involved in a terrible boating accident that led him and the doctors to this point.
“I remember holding onto the engine and boat trying to jump out,” said Cruz as he recalled what little he could remember about that day. “I was basically just fighting for my life.”
That is what he remembers about that day that he was spending with his wife and young twins on Elliot Key. It was when they were leaving that things went terribly wrong.
“I just remember getting sucked in,” said Cruz.
He and his cousin were helping a boat that was stuck on the sandbar when he was sucked under the other boat into the propeller from his leg all the way up to his hip.
“I was telling the person who was holding my hand to tell my wife and kids that I love them. That’s the last thing I remember,” he said.
What he would later find out was that next to him was Terrance Dolan, a Lieutenant for Miami-Dade Fire Rescue who was off-duty but close enough to hear what was going on.
“I quickly called dispatch to start an air rescue immediately,” said Dolan, realizing what he was walking into.
He began first aid and even started an IV as he saw Jonathan going into shock. This was acknowledged by the doctors and surgeons there who have been with Jonathan for his entire recovery.
“It’s a blessing to see him here, it played a huge role to see that they are all here,” said Jessica Cruz, Jonathan’s wife, when asked what it means to see him here today with everyone that worked to save his life that day.
While his strength and determination were acknowledged by the medical staff, her support was as well.
“We can’t undervalue the support of his wife and family from day one,” said Dr. Joyce Kaufman, a trauma surgeon at Ryder.
She and the other professionals have performed at least 30 surgeries with many more to go along with hours of physical therapy.
They were there to show their support and acknowledge Jonathan for getting back on his feet so quickly.
The family has set up a GoFundMe page which you can find by clicking here.