SAN JOSE (CBS13) — The lone survivor of a plane crash in Truckee is speaking out about the accident as doctors are calling his recovery a miracle.
Eric Raptosh suffered severe injuries in the crash near the Truckee Airport in July. He’s been recovering at the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center ever since.
He’s spent nearly two months trying to fill in the emotional and physical gaps since the plane he was flying in with his husband Peter Jackson went down.
But on Thursday, he gets to go home.
“I don’t really have any recollection of taking off after that, and you wake up and you’re wondering where you are.”
The couple was trying to get pictures of Pyramid Lake in Truckee when the plane when down. Peter and the pilot, Kenneth Whitall-Scherfee, died in the crash.
Eric was left with a broken bag and ribs, a busted leg and extensive brain and spinal cord damage. But he found strength and peace with a simple technique.
“One of the things I would do if I had any sort of feelings I didn’t like, I would breathe in and say of feel ‘love,’ and I would breathe out and I would say or feel ‘healing,'” he said.
With three hours of physical therapy six days a week, his recovery has been nothing short of a miracle according to Dr. James Crew.
“Cases like Eric’s are truly remarkable and inspiring, and I think drive most of us here to do the work that we do every day,” he said.
Eric admits that re-learning simple and mundane tasks has been hard and humbling.
“We worked on a lot of different things, using your legs as leverage, really understanding how to balance yourself, how to control yourself, how to maneuver yourself out of bed, how to get your socks on in the morning,” he said.
While he’s still in his wheelchair, he says he’s read to be discharged and begin a new chapter with a deeper appreciation for life.
“I feel like I’ve got a second chance at life and I almost feel like my life is just starting,” he said.