Nearly three weeks after being seriously injured by a suspected drunk driver, California Highway Patrol Officer Martin Lendway was released from the hospital Friday.
Accompanied by a cheerful crowd of CHP officers, Lendway left John Muir Hospital in Walnut Creek.
"Super happy to be able to go home," Lendway said.
Lendway had pulled over to help motorists who had gotten into a fender bender on Highway 4 in Concord when investigators say the DUI driver slammed into them leaving Lendway pinned under a truck with broken legs.
"The rehab guys at the hospital were amazing," he said. "They’re getting me on a path to getting back to work."
Lendway’s fellow officers surprised him by getting his boots, which had to be cut off during the accident by emergency workers, re-built and polished.
"We are ecstatic Martin’s getting out of the hospital today," CHP Officer Nathan Johnson said. "He’s in good spirits. I’m glad to see him smiling."
Lendway is happy to be out of the hospital and realizes that the accident could have ended far differently. On Christmas Eve, CHP Officer Andrew Camilleri was hit and killed by another DUI driver. He urges people not to drive drunk.
"It might be me, it might be some child," Lendway said. "Be mindful of what you do. If you have any alcohol at all choose another way to drive to get a ride home."