Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

April 30, 2019
The guy from Room 19 teaches us all to live a life of gratitude

“I brought you some lunch,” Gordy said to one of the nurses at the critical care unit of the hospital.

He could tell by the way she looked at him that she had no idea who he was and why he had brought lunch for the whole nursing staff in critical care.

“I’m the guy from Room 19,” he said to dissuade her obvious anxiety.

His brief explanation did little to change the confused look on her face.

“All of you saved my life!” he continued. “And, I just want to show you my gratitude!”

She still didn’t believe him. After all, she was certain that the injuries to the man who had been in Room 19 were far too severe for anyone to survive. So, he told her all the details of his long stay there, right up until a smile of realization broke across her face.

“You’re the guy from Room 19!” she cried out, excitedly. “Hey! He’s the guy from Room 19!” She called out to another nurse down the hall.

Her skepticism was warranted. It had been a little over two years ago that Gordy was lying on his garage floor, in a pool of his own blood. He had fallen from the storage mezzanine in his garage directly onto his head. All of us, his family and friends, were fraught with concern by the slim chance of his survival and recovery prospects.

Yet, here he was, smiling, recounting his journey back to health while sitting right next to me.

“No one thought I’d make it!” he said. “But I’m here and I have the firefighters, the nurses and doctors, my family, friends, and everyone in my neighborhood to thank. Without all of them, I wouldn’t be here today! I’ll never forget what they did for me!”

I leaned in a little closer so I could hear every word of his story. We were sitting together in a large restaurant in celebration. Perhaps it was the food that spurred him on to tell me another of his personal conveyances to members of the Salt Lake Unified Fire Department.

“I went over to the station that answered the call to help me,” he said. “I owe those guys everything! I just wanted them to know, that because of them, I lived!” 

He finished his story of wonder with his personal saying, “I’m so great you just can’t believe it!” as we completed our day together. It was a great day. 

“Gordy is great,” I thought. “He’s a great father, husband, grandfather, friend and neighbor.” I watched him walk away with his wife, Jackie. “And, he’s great at showing gratitude for his miraculous resurrection!”

I’m grateful as well. Grateful that my friend is alive. Grateful that he’s here to teach you and me about how to live a grateful life! Grateful that Room 19 will forever be empty, to me, because Gordy is the guy from Room 19. 

Yes! Gordy is alive and teaching!

Lynn Butterfield lives in Erda and is a managing broker for a real estate company.

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