An Alabama police officer is working security at the very same hospital that saved his life after a near-death accident.
University of South Alabama Police Officer Kenneth Johnson Jr. is walking the beat at the University of South Alabama (USA) Health Hospital in Mobile that provided life-saving care to him after he was critically injured in a traffic accident.
Johnson Jr. said the life and death experience has given him a new outlook on life.
“Being in law enforcement, your body is your biggest tool, you have to be able to move around and assist in certain ways,” the officer said.
In March 2021, Johnson Jr. was hit by a truck on Cottage Hill Road. It was uncertain whether he would ever walk again or even survive the accident, so he got married in the hospital to his wife, Diamond.
She even found out she was pregnant at the hospital.
“I wanted to make sure I left something back for her and then we found out we’re pregnant and it was just a whole lot of emotions all at once,” Johnson Jr. said.
After weeks recovering in the university hospital and countless hours of rehab, Johnson Jr. is miraculously almost fully recovered, and now has a family to show for it.
The officer credited the USA hospital staff and his support network for his successful recovery.
“Family, meaning my USA health family, my university family, everyone chipped in and helped me and did an amazing job,” he explained.
He also is able to better empathize with those he meets at the hospital.
“People are coming from traumatic and catastrophic events in their lives and going through what I went through. It helps me move forward in the position I’m in now,” he added.
His image has even been emblazoned onto the wall at the Trauma Fanny Meisler Trauma Center at University Hospital.
Before his work as a police officer, Johnson Jr. worked as an academic counselor at the university and was even a member of the Jaguar’s first football team.