Last Sunday, a crew from Norwalk’s JS Landscaping removed a very large and quite dead tree near Maple Avenue South.
Allison Wiedman, her husband and 3 kids — summer renters — watched the action. The trunk snapped. They heard an enormous bang.
The tree had fallen onto the JS truck. Ronny Salazar — owner Jose’s brother — tried to get away. But he was pinned underneath.
His 3 brothers and Allison’s husband Bill managed to push the enormous trunk off Ronny’s leg.
Allison — a physical therapist — saw that Ronny had a massive wound to his right elbow: a severed brachial artery, multiple compound fractures, missing tissue, and massive bleeding.
After calling 911 she told the men to compress near Ronny’s underarm, then ran into the house to find something to use as a tourniquet. She remembered seeing thick exercise band in the guest room.
When she got back, a police officer was on the scene and applying a tourniquet. EMS arrived quickly, and took him to Yale New Haven Hospital.
Over the next few days he underwent multiple surgeries. Doctors made the difficult decision to amputate his leg below the knee.
Thankfully, he will still have use of his right arm and hand, though after reconstruction it will never be the same.
Allison has helped Juan try to navigate the healthcare system. A neighbor, Rachel Gordon, set up a GoFundMe account to help with medical bills, lost wages, the expense of a prostheses and more.
Juan and Ronny came from Costa Rica. Juan moved here when he was 18 years old, nearly 20 years ago.
He worked as a busboy, line cook and in a nursery until about 10 years ago, when he earned enough money to start a landscaping company.
They started with 16 clients and now have 130. Juan has seen the United States be a land of opportunity for those willing to work for it.
From the hospital, Ronny is hoping he will recover enough to follow in his brother’s footsteps, and play with his nieces.
We know times are difficult for everyone right now, but we hope you will consider donating to the Salazar Family Accident Fund. Juan and Ronny are some of the kindest, hardest-working people you will ever meet. They have successfully pursued the American dream until this point/ We don’t want to let a random accident beyond their control derail them, but the unfortunate reality is that our system is set up in a way that it can.
All money raised will be given directly to Juan and Ronny. Every little bit will help as they begin their journey forward from this terrible accident.
(Click here for the GoFundMe page for Juan and Ronny Salazar.)