DeSoto County deputy shared inspirational recovery story

Updated: Jun. 3, 2021 at 8:48 PM CDT
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DESOTO COUNTY, Miss. (WMC) - A Desoto County deputy is sharing his story for the first time months after being hit by a suspected drunk driver.

That crash left Deputy Austin Eldridge critically injured.

“It’s been rough. there’s been a lot to get through,” he said.

Eldridge says he’s had his good and bad days recovering from an incident in early February. He was helping someone with a flat tire along I-269 when a driver struck him. Both of his legs were injured in the crash.

“All my injuries combined, I had a left leg amputated above the knee, right leg severely injured with a lot of hardware, and a lot of bone reconstruction,” said Eldridge. “And my spleen was taken out. I’m very thankful to be where I am at this point in recovery, but it’s been a very rough road. ‘[It] could of been a lot worse. I’m thankful that it wasn’t.”

After the incident, there was an outpour of community support, which Eldridge says was very encouraging.

“It literally had me in tears in the hospital when I was just scrolling through Facebook and seeing the support that we were being given,” he said.

Aside from the community, Eldridge says his biggest motivation comes from his wife and the baby they are expecting.

“Actually, a month from today we’re expecting our first child. Our son Truette will be born July 3. We’re very excited about that. She’s been my rock through this whole thing,” Eldridge said.

Eldridge says he’s still in rehab, but his goal is to get back to work and be in a patrol car once again.

“I want to get back to work. I love this job ,I love this department. I was doing what I love when I got hurt and I want get back to doing it.”

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