ETMC paramedic hit by drunk driver identified

Posted at 9:43 AM, Aug 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-21 12:09:00-04

An ETMC paramedic continues to recover after being hit by a drunk driver in Waco early Saturday morning.

Waco Police Department Sgt. Patrick Swanton said officers responded to a crash about 3:30 a.m. in the median near the intersection of Imperial Drive and Loop 340.

While working the crash, someone involved in the crash returned to the scene and requested medical attention, Swanton said.

ETMC personnel responded and treated the person involved in the crash. 

The wife of the paramedic has identified him as Rory Barros. 

Barros was getting out of the ambulance, when a drunk driver going north failed to stay in his lane and hit the paramedic, pinning him between the car and the ambulance, Swanton said.

Barros was taken to Scott & White Medical Center-Hillcrest with life-threatening injuries.

"The plan is to stabilize his blood pressure and then perform exploratory surgery in an attempt to find an internal bleed," Swanton said.

Police arrested 36-year-old Alec Nava and charged him with intoxicated assault on a public servant and driving with an invalid license.

"The men and women of ETMC are an extremely valuable resource to our community, saving our citizens lives every day. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers as they deal with this line of duty injury," Swanton said.

Barros received open fracture to both bones in his left lower leg, complete blowout of his left knee, a severe injury to his left hip/flank area and some other injuries. He is expected to receive more surgeries. 

In November, Borros had his lower left leg amputated after undergoing at least fourteen surgeries

A GoFundMe page has been created to help with Barros medical costs.

Below is the statement of Amy Barros, wife of Rory Barros.

As some of you have heard, my husband was involved in a horrible accident yesterday morning. A drunk driver ran into his ambulance while he and his partners, Camille and Grant, were standing outside of it. He pushed Camille to safety but was hit by the car. It caused serious injury and left my husband critically injured. Among his injuries are: open fracture (bone breaking through the skin) to both bones in his left lower leg, complete blowout of his left knee (tore every ligament and tendon), shattering of his left pelvis which caused internal bleeding, a severe injury to his left hip/flank area where (because he was hit with such force) the muscle was torn away from his skin causing a critical amount of blood loss, left rib fractures, some damage to his right knee (although less severe than the injury to his left knee) and some other less serious injuries. He has been to OR to place an external fixator (you can google what that looks like) from the top of his thigh to his ankle to keep everything immobile. He will go back to the OR Monday or Tuesday to begin the rebuilding of his left pelvis and hopefully the plating of his lower leg fractures. There will be many surgeries ahead of us...and the road to recovery will be long and arduous. 

But let me tell you about our miracles. Rory received no trauma to his head and brain. He received no trauma to his spine or any internal organs in his abdomen. After receiving 15+ bags of blood (and many other blood products) he still remains off any medications to keep his blood pressure up in a normal range (these medications are very hard on the body and we want to avoid them if we can.) He remains stable with his breathing and pulmonary functions and does not require a breathing tube at this time. He is able to communicate and act his goofy, stubborn loving old self without any deficits or barriers. He is able to move his left toes and is regaining some sensation in his left leg where, before, in the emergency room he lacked all those things. Although no one wants to get hit by a car, he was very lucky to be surrounded by Waco PD, Waco Fire and his coworkers who happen to be pretty awesome paramedics that immediately began working on him. Let's also not forget about the fully stocked, although totaled, ambulance that just so happened to be in close proximity to the entire incident. 

Really, as horrible as the entire ordeal was...we have been extremely blessed in many aspects. ETMC EMS of Waco, the company Rory works for, has been monumental in many of these blessings. I cannot begin to thank his entire work family (ETMC and all first responders of Waco) for the kindness and love they have showered on Rory, myself and our families. I also must thank the wonderful nurses and doctors who helped save my husbands life. 

We welcome visitors at Hillcrest, but there may be a chance Rory needs rest and will not be able to visit with everyone. There will be people in the waiting room during the days to point anyone in the right direction. We are in the Surgical ICU currently. 

I will also share the Go Fund Me account Rory's wonderful work family has started, if there are some who would like to donate. It is so very much appreciated, whether donations or prayers or even hugs. It all means the world to us. 

I will also include one of the news reports on the incident. It gives more detail about what occurred at the crime scene. And that's what this was...a crime. Someone chose to drink and drive and could have cost my husband his life. And he will be held accountable for those actions.

Copyright 2017 KXXV. All rights reserved.