Injured Machinist: ‘Great to have you always there’

SEATTLE — A Machinists Union member who lost both legs below the knee in a high-profile accident at the Boeing Co. came to a local lodge meeting in September to thank his co-workers and his union for all they’d done for him.

“I greatly appreciate the cards and all of the support,” Josh Divers told fellow  members of Machinists Union Local Lodge 751-A, after he waked up the stairs on his new prosthetic legs to address the lodge from the stage at the Seattle Union Hall.

“My buddies and all my crew coming down to see me — the support’s been overwhelming,” he said. “It’s great to have you always there.”

Divers was injured on Feb. 3. He was part of a crew walking with a 787 while it was being towed that night. He was run over and dragged about 12 feet. His feet were crushed under the landing gear and both of his legs were later amputated below the knee.

Washington’s Department of Labor & Industries investigated and found Boeing managers had committed several safety violations. L&I fined the company $3,600 in connection with the incident.

The safety issues L&I identified have been corrected, the agency said in July when it issued the fine.

Today, Divers said he’s getting intensive physical therapy and is “trying to get out of the house as much as possible.”

He’s able to walk and even drive, but when he’s on his artificial feet for too long, the stumps of his legs begin to ache, Divers said.

Still, the doctors tell him his progress has been remarkable. The day he got fitted with his second prosthetic leg, Divers said he was able to walk outside the hospital. No other amputee has done that, the doctors told him.

“I was like ‘Yes!'” Divers said, pumping his fist. “It’s only been six months and I’m up and walking. The doctor said 18 months.”

To pass the time, Divers has been restoring a 1936 Chevrolet delivery truck. “Before I had my ‘legs’ I was able to get out there with my wheelchair,” he said. “It was better than laying down all the time.”

Tommy Wilson, a business representative for Machinists Union District Lodge 751, was involved in the accident investigation. He’s been in close contact with Divers and his family since the accident.

“This man has got one helluva heart,” Wilson said. He credited Divers’ family and friends for keeping his spirits up and helping his recovery.

Other Machinists Union representatives have also been helpful, Divers said.

“Anything that I need, any questions, I just give them a call,” he said. “They’re basically doing anything and everything they can. And instead of just occasionally showing up, these guys have been there through the whole entire thing.”

Divers said his goal is to return to work at Boeing. He said he’ll get evaluated by doctors later this fall, and if all goes well, he could be back in Everett sometime after the first of the year.

“I’m hoping to come back as soon as I can,” Divers said. “I’ve been bored. I need to work.”

His union brothers and sisters will do all they can to help, Wilson said. “We’re going to be there with him the day he walks back into that plant.”

Originally formed in 1935 to represent hourly workers at Boeing, District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 32,000 working men and women at 48 employers through a network of local lodges in Seattle, Richland, Spokane and Wenatchee.

Follow our latest tweets at http://twitter.com/IAM751

Advertisements
Comments
One Response to “Injured Machinist: ‘Great to have you always there’”
  1. BRENT TRACY says:

    YOU HANG TUFF BRUTHA… I’M A 30 YEAR MACHINIST IN MANY ASPECTS OF THE TRADE INCLUDING PROSTHETICS. SPACE SHUTTLE , ROCKETS , IMPLANTS , MISSLES TO MY FIRST AUTOMOBILE …A ’38 CHEVY PICKUP ! IT KEPT ME OUT OF TROUBLE AS A KID AT 15 IN AN AUTOMOTIVE MACHINE SHOP ( EXCEPT WITH THE COPS ON THE COUNTRY BACK ROADS ..DRAG RACING .. he he he ) . KICKED EVERY LOCALS AZZZZZ ! LATER I MOVED ON TO A ’50 P/U .. AND A SWEET ’37 CHEV P/U . ( I CAN SEND PICTURES IF YOU’D LIKE ) . DID THE CORVETTE THING AND ON TO THE ULTIMATE …A ’31 CHOP TOP COUPE WITH A BLOWN SMALLBLOCK AND JAG REAREND. NOW I’M DOIN CHOPPERS DUE TO LACK OF SPACE . I’M ALSO ON A DISSABILITY HERE IN OREGON DUE TO A BLOOD CLOT THAT CAUSED “DVT” …DEEP VIEN THROMBOUS IN MY LEG . SUCKS ! I MISS MY LIFE LONG TRADE . BET YOU DO TOO . NOT TO WORRY THOUGH BRO … SOMETIMES A LOT OF GOOD THINGS COME FROM MISSFORTUNE . FOR ME … IT WAS THE CHANCE TO DO WHAT I’VE ALWAYS DREAMED OF DOING….” PHOTOGRAPHY ” . AND IT SEEMS THAT THE “BIG MAN” IS SENDING IT ALL RIGHT MY WAY . I’M A VERY FORTUNATE MAN . I’M ALSO A DRAGRACING “FREEK” ! I HAVE A FREND WHO’S A VET THAT’S IN A CHAIR THAT IT JUST SO HAPPENS I MET AT THE MILE HIGH NATIONALS IN DENVER , COLORADO .
    GREAT GUY YOU’D LIKE TO MEET . I’VE HAD OTHER FRIENDS IN A CHAIR AS WELL AS MY MOTHER . YOUR NOT NOW AND THAT’S A GOOD THING BUT YOU’VE SPENT TIME THERE . I USED TO WHEEL MY GOOD MOTHERS CHAIR AROUND JUST TO SEE IF I COULD IMPROVE ON IT SOMEHOW . I THINK I CAN ! I HAVE AN IDEA ! MAYBE WITH YOUR’S AND MY BACKGROUND WE CAN MAKE THIS THING WORK TO MAKE LIFE MORE PALLETABLE FOR THOSE WHO HAVE NO ALTERNATIVE BUT THAT . AGAIN… BECAUSE I READ THIS STORY…AN OPTION HAS BEEN OPENED UP TO ME TO POSSIBLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN SOME SMALL WAY . BUT .. IF YOUR WILLING… I’LL NEED YOUR INPUT TO SEE IF IT’LL WORK . EVEN IF IT WON’T WE CAN TALK ” OLD CHEVY’S AND HOT WOMEN ” ! RIGHT ?
    THE PROSTHETIC COMPANY I WORKED FOR IN SLC,UTAH WAS CALLED ” MOTION CONTROL” . THEY ARE ON — 115 WRIGHT BROTHERS DRIVE SLC,UT. 84??? .
    THEY MAY BE ABLE TO HELP IN YOUR CAUSE AS THEY HAD JUST DEVELOPED A NEW LEG THAT WAS VERY PROMISING . I JUST MADE ARMS . VERY C O O L ..! IF YOU SHOULD CALL THEM …. ASK FOR “ALLY DUFFY ” AND TELL HER I SENT YOU . SHE’S A VERY GOOD FRIEND WITH A HEART OF GOLD . SHE ‘S THE H/R GIRL AND THE ACCOUNTANT .
    I’D HIGHLY RECOMEND THAT YOU AT LEAST TALK TO HER FOR OPTIONS IN YOUR FAVOR . SO I’VE BLABBED ENOUGH … TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT… I WISH YOU THE BEST IN WHATEVER YOU DO . I HOPE SOMEDAY TO SEE THAT STREETROD LAYIN IT DOWN WITH AN EXTRA HEAVY BOOT ON THE GAS PEDDLE …..:SMOKE ‘EM IF YOU GOT ‘EM ……
    “THAT’S WHAT I ALWAY’S SAY ” !

    TYPE ME UP SOMETIME…

    BRENTTRACY2U@YAHOO.COM 775-299-8751 SEASIDE , OR.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

%d bloggers like this: