After Devastating Accident, Westporters Help

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.

Ronny Salazar

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.

She wrote:

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.)

5 responses to “After Devastating Accident, Westporters Help

  1. Jeff Jacobs

    There is so much to appreciate in the kindness and mutual support shown by so many members of our human family (such as Allison Wiedman and the EMT crew). And there are always opportunities life provides to serve and act in selfless, generous, patient ways toward our brothers and sisters.

  2. Thanks Dan. Horrible accident. Thank you for letting us know. Landscapers keep our homes and communities looking beautiful and will contribute.

  3. Celia Offir

    This is such a horrible accident. Everyone, please be careful!

    I’m not sure what type of tree this was but please be aware that ash trees are dying all over CT due to an infestation. Some dead trees remain structurally sound for years but not infested ash trees. We just had a tree removed, as did my neighbor, and a bucket truck was needed to cut it down because it was not safe to climb. It came to our attention only after a 12 ft limb had fallen.

  4. Irene Mastriacovo

    I just happened to be driving down the road when I saw the police and EMS service and was rerouted — thought it was just another “fender bender”. Wish it was. So sad. Glad to know there are wonderful people out there like Allison and Bill. Ronny, you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  5. Sally Wanamaker

    Thank you for sharing this Dan. The Salazars did a great job taking down one of our trees that fell on our neighbors’ house during a storm two years ago. Hard-working, terrific people and this is very sad news. This accident will affect them in many ways —loss of business as they attend to their brother, the medical expenses, loss of the truck etc. on top of the Heartbreak of Ronny’s injuries.