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    Rancho Cordova Officer Goes Home After Paralyzing Injury

    Rancho Cordova Officer Goes Home After Paralyzing Injury
    Written for the web by C. Johnson, Internet News Producer



    With emotion plainly etched on his face and in his words, a Rancho Cordova motorcycle officer who sustained critical injuries in a collision last October returned home today, fittingly escorted by a motorcycle motorcade.

    Officer Bill Woodel, 46, was thrown from his motorcycle on Coloma Road when the driver of a Volkswagen Jetta pulled out in front of him. The impact shattered Woodel's spine at the level of his chest. The injury resulted in paralysis and has confined Woodel to a wheelchair.

    On Thursday, the 23-year-veteran officer, with his wife, sons and fellow motorcycle officers flanking him, left the U.C. Davis Medical Center. Woodel said he was very happy to be going home. "It's been a long, hard road to recovery, trying to get through this ordeal, but with patience and the guidance from the physical and occupational therapy people I'm ready to leave the hospital and continue getting through life in my wheelchair," he said.

    Woodel admitted he was struggling to come to terms with his disability. "I still have a very difficult time dealing with the fact I'm a paraplegic," he said. "It's so very hard. I wouldn't wish this on anybody." Then in a stronger voice, he added, "But it's a challenge I have to take and I'll do my very best. I owe it to my family. I owe it to these men. We give our very best to the community."

    Before leaving, the officer commented on being a law enforcement officer. "It's a wonderful career" said Woodel. "I loved being an officer. I was an officer for 23 years. It's a job I really loved and I always tried to give a little mercy. Everytime I walked away from a call for service, officers will attest, I would always walk away saying 'another satisfied customer' because I always wanted to leave people with a positve outlook toward the sheriff's department."

    Woodel was a member of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department for 15 years of his career. In recent years he served as a member of the Rancho Cordova Police Department, which is staffed by sheriff's deputies.

    The 55-year-old driver of the Jetta was also taken to UCDMC for treatment of her injuries. At last report, no charges were filed in the collision.

    Source:

    http://www.news10.net/storyfull2.aspx?storyid=15299

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