Andrew Pates Jr. was on the cusp of a new adventure.
Once a teacher near Chicago and later a lawyer in San Diego, the 68-year-old retiree was ready to move to Mound Bayou and build a hotel. Then a freak fall in a parking lot put everything on hold.
“I hit the back of my head and they said if I had taken the blow a little higher, I would have been DOA,” Pates said.
Instead, he survived the accident only to become “an upside down paraplegic.” His legs could move, but his upper body was rigid.
“My shoulders were frozen and getting progressively worse,” he said.