A dispatcher of more than 20 years may have to give up his beloved job because his mode of transportation is getting too old.
David McDonald said his old van is nearing its final days. Now, his co-workers are trying to help a person who’d rather not ask for it.
It’s only a ten minute ride to the Clinton Police Department, but getting to work can take a while for McDonald.
When he was 20 years old, McDonald’s neck was broken in two places during a diving accident. The incident felt him a quadriplegic.
“I’m paralyzed from my chest down so I can’t walk at all,” McDonald said.
McDonald spent 30 days at Yale-New Haven Hospital before another three months at Gaylord Rehabilitation Hospital. It took him a decade to regain his independence and move on.
“Your whole world just completely turned upside down,” McDonald said.
While he moves freely in his chair, getting his van to move anywhere is a struggle
“My mechanic says it’s like a death trap,” McDonald said. “It’s just all rusted out, has 148,000 miles on it.”
With his van more than 20 years old, and showing plenty of signs of wear and tear, there's a lot of concern it won't make it to the winter or through the winter.
Clinton Dispatcher Taso Clados has worked side-by-side with McDonald and has plenty about the van.
“After the mechanic called it a death trap, I thought maybe we should start working on helping this guy out,” Clados said.
Clados started a GoFundMe page to get McDonald a new van. The page has more than 800 shares and raised more than $6,000. The goal for a new van is $26,000.
For McDonald, he said “asking for help has never been a strong point for me."
For a person who loves his job because it lets him help others, McDonald said he is truly grateful his family at the Clinton Police Department along with some complete strangers are doing the same for him when he needs it most.
If you want information on how to help McDonald, click here.
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