POMPANO BEACH (CBSMiami) – The family of an injured Pompano Beach firefighter says they are doing everything they can to get him home. But doctors in Indonesia won’t release him until they receive tens of thousands of dollars to cover the cost of his care after he took a nasty fall.
Michael Hughes is one of Pompano Beach’s newest firefighters, but he’s already made an impact on his department.
“Very, very positive,” said Richard Culpo, a battalion chief for Pompano Beach Fire Rescue. “He goes about his day in the most positive ways. He loves running calls, loves being a firefighter.”
After an annual ski trip with friends to Canada and Japan, Michael ended up in Bali, where, on Monday, he was injured in a terrible accident.
“He had an accident there and he fell. He was severely hurt,” said Lorene Parker, Michael’s mother.
Patrick Hughes, Michael’s brother, said he currently isn’t even able to travel back to the United States for care.
“Multiple broken ribs, collapsed lung where he has a tube that he’s basically breathing through at the moment, damage to his lower back and his spine vertebrae area,” said Patrick.
According to a GoFundMe page for Michael, he also suffered head injuries and broke all the ribs on one side of his body. The estimated cost for the surgeries and to get him home are $250,000.
“We appreciate everyone who’s been so supportive, phone calls from everyone, everywhere,” said Patrick. “We just want to get him stable, get him home, and the care he needs here.”
“Our department’s a family. We’re heartbroken,” said Culpo.
If you would like to help with Michael Hughes’ medical expenses, visit this GoFundMe page.