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Firefighter back to work after leg amputation below the knee

FRANKLIN, Ohio (Jeff Hirsh) -- A firefighter in Franklin was back on the job after suffering a potentially career-ending injury.
   
He lost part of his leg in an accident but this firefighter never gave up on his dream.

Matt Hicks of the Franklin Fire Department said, "Absolutely, that was the first thing that went through my mind.  Absolutely I thought, 'My dream is over. I'll never be a firefighter again.'"

Last fall, 24-year-old Matthew Hicks had his left leg amputated below the knee.  Hicks was on his motorcycle in Indiana and hit another vehicle which pulled into his way.  Hicks survived, went through rehab, and had prosthetics fitted so he can get dressed in two minutes.  And on Hicks' first day back on the job as a firefighter he went on 16 runs.

"I just told myself I want to be back.  This is what I want to do with the rest of my life.  This is the career that I want for myself," Hicks said.

Camaraderie and brotherhood has a lot to do with people of the fire service.  There are women too, but the term "brotherhood" can cover everybody. After the injury a firefighter from suburban Columbus who had the exact same injury was able to go back to work. Anthony Torres came down and visited Matt in the hospital.

Hicks said, "And seeing him walk-in that door on his prosthesis and saying he's back to firefighting, that was the biggest morale boost I had through this whole ordeal."

Matt returned to work just 10 months after his accident.  Firefighters are often called heroes for the work they do.  Matt Hicks was a hero for inspiring others.

A Florida-based charity called "50 Legs" contributed nearly $30,000 so Matt Hicks could get a prosthetic device which fits inside his firefighter's boot.

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