A former solder from Indiana has undergone a life-saving face transplant after suffering horrific injuries while saving a woman in a car accident.
Mitch Hunter, 30, formerly of the 82nd Airborne, underwent a groundbreaking 14-hour operation. A 30 person team replaced his nose, eyelids, lips, facial animation muscles and the nerves that power them and provide sensation.
This is only the fourth time this complex procedure has been performed in the United States. It was performed at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
In 2001, the heroic Hoosier was a passenger in a car that smashed into a utility pole, bringing it down on the vehicle. He pushed a live wire off of the female driver, but in the process endured 10,000 volts for five minutes and suffered horrific, disfiguring electrical burns.
For five years, he stayed inside. He’s undergone dozens of surgeries. Today, he works for Amazon.com and has three-month-old baby.
“For ten years people took second looks at him. Kids looked at him weird,” said his sister, Morgan Hunter. “I’m looking forward to going out to eat with him; I’m looking forward to going for walks with him, things he wasn’t comfortable doing, maybe going to a baseball game, just simple things.”[via Daily Mail, ABC News, Boston Globe]