PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Neighbors in Portsmouth’s Park View community are coming together to support a man who was shocked by a power line last month.
The shock nearly killed Tony Myrick. He had to have his hand and part of his arm amputated. He says he’s grateful to the medics who saved his life and for those who are looking out for him now.
“I’m still the same me,” Myrick said.
It was storming on June 16 when Myrick said he got out of his girlfriend’s Jeep in the midst of the heavy rain to clear what he thought was debris.
“I didn’t know it was a power line. I thought it was like a tree branch or something,” Myrick said. “They said I just fell down. I was dead for five minutes with the wire in my hand.”
Myrick said he believes his brother, who passed away last year, was looking out for him.
Portsmouth Fire-Rescue and Emergency Services says they responded to a call on that street for a man shocked by a downed power line. He went to the hospital in critical condition.
“He just said, ‘We got to amputate your arm, your hand, because we couldn’t save it,'” Myrick said.
Myrick spent two weeks in the hospital before being released. Then the help started rolling in — in the form of a community Facebook group.
“I just came over here and asked what was needed, and we went from there,” Myrick’s neighbor Traci Lovelace said. “I went back to that same Facebook group and shared the story and asked for assistance as far as food and money for prescription medication.”
Stephanie Booth, another neighbor, was empathetic as well.
“What if this happened to my own child?” she said. “I would want people to help him.”
Myrick says he’s grateful for all of the support. He plans to return to work when he can.
“It was a crazy experience. Gotta learn from it. Like I said, you just got to look at life different now. It’s going to be kind of difficult with one hand, but I’ll get through it.”
10 On Your Side reached out to Dominion Energy about Myrick’s experience. They said their thoughts and prayers were with Myrick and his family, but that they couldn’t comment on the incident.
If you’d like to donate to Myrick as he recovers, click here.