Hurt deputy has friends back home - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Hurt deputy has friends back home

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January 23, 2008

Thomasville -- A month after a Thomas County deputy is critically injured on the job, his hometown community is rallying behind him.

While Deputy Chad Griffin recovers at the Shepherds Center in Atlanta, the folks back home want him to know they support him, both emotionally and financially.

The doctors in the emergency room at Archbold Hospital share a bond with emergency responders. Often they work together in the same life or death situations.

No one in the emergency room expected that soon they'd have to provide care for a first responder himself. But after an accident here on Georgia Highway 122, early Christmas morning, that's exactly what happened.

Deputy Chad Griffin was transporting a prisoner when his patrol car struck a horse that was loose in the road. Griffin was partially paralyzed.  "It's a stressful time when a family member is injured and that's kind of how we felt when Chad got injured," said Emergency Physician Dr. Arch McNeill.

At Archbold they did emergency surgery. When he was stable enough he was transferred to Atlanta.  "It's a spinal cord, spine, and head trauma center.  It's all they do.  It's a great place," says Thomas County Sheriff's Investigator Jason Carroll.

Griffin is recovering, slowly but surely.  "While he's been at Shepherd Center, he's been able to move both legs up and down, side to side," Carroll says.

Workman's Compensation will cover Griffin's medical care, but other costs for the family are piling up. Back home, his good friends wanted to help. "We donated $1000 directly to his family," says McNeill. 

The ER docs are challenging doctors in other areas of the hospital to beat their contribution. They're hoping everyone who hears about Griffin will do what they can to help. 

Donations can be made to the Chad Griffin Fund at Rose City Federal Credit Union at 229-228-9826, or call the Thomas County Sheriff's Office to help.

There will also be a benefit dinner to help the Griffin's on February 9th. For tickets, again call the Thomas County Sheriff's Office.   That number is 229-225-3300.

You can also keep up to date on Griffin's progress, or lend words of encouragement by visiting http://www.caringbridge.org/ and typing in chadgriffin.

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