PENDLETON — Pendleton Heights graduate Jeremiah Roosa has always found ways to get the most out of his life by working hard and meeting tough challenges.
After a freak and devastating accident, Roosa is facing his toughest challenge yet.
While driving to work on April 27, Roosa avoided an accident but his car became stuck in the median.
While he was able to free the car, it unexpectedly began rolling and pinned Roosa between his and another vehicle. The result was a crushed pelvis, split sacrum, broken ribs and a break within his spine. He was conscious throughout the ordeal.
“I could feel my left pelvis rolling inside of me,” Roosa said.
When freed, he said he flopped on the ground in the medium.
He soon found himself being rushed into surgery, where doctors had to use rods, screws and other components in the area of his pelvis and lower sine. This setup had to stay in place for eight weeks.
Once removed, Roosa will face months of rehabilitation, including relearning to walk.
He’s in a wheelchair but is able to stand, and pivot on one foot to sit in a chair.
“Doctors told me that me being young is very helpful for recovery,” Roosa said.
The 2013 wrestling sectional champ at 113 pounds continued to be active and athletic after graduation with many outdoor activities, such as hiking and golf.
“I’m bored all day. There’s only so much TV you can watch.”
Dave Cloud, who coached Roosa as a wrestler believes Roosa’s attributes as an athlete will help with his rehab. “He was very athletic and could do some things you just can’t teach,” Cloud said. “He has this adventurous spirit that radiated excited for whatever he was doing. He had a lot of love and respect from his teammates.”
While it’s possible to work from home for his company, Roosa said he can’t right now because of the meds he has to take. Roosa has worked in IT for the past six years.
He lives in Fishers with two roommates.
“I didn’t know how it would be (after leaving the hospital), but they’ve been amazing with it. They’ve been awesome,” Roosa said.
His family and friends come by, and the company is welcomed by Roosa.
“I can’t wait to go hiking, camping and golfing again. I want to play cornhole, volleyball and do cliff diving again,” Roosa said. “Just being able to go for a walk will be nice.”
“Sometimes you choose the challenge, and sometimes the challenge chooses you. He’s never shied away from a challenge,” Cloud said.
One of Roosa’s biggest challenges is financial. Although employed, he’d only recently begun working for his new company and did not have health insurance yet.
Because the accident was considered no one’s fault, he cannot rely on his car insurance either. Between the hospital stay, surgery and rehabilitation, Roosa faces steep medical bills.
A Go Fund Me page has been set up in his name to help with the mounting costs.