Mike Patterson, although undoubtedly a hero, has become paralyzed after his heroic display.
The shock announcement of his condition is just as shocking, if not more so, than the story about a woman who was paralyzed by a sneeze.
Patterson was out near a creek in Rockmart, spending some time with his 9-year-old son, when he saw the girl fall in the water.
Upon seeing the 4-year-old, named Jevaeh Jones, get pulled under the water by strong currents, the 43-year-old hero immediately dived in to save her.
This quick response will probably remind readers of Caleb Taylor, a young 5-year-old who also saved lives because of his quick thinking actions.
According to Patterson’s family, he sprung into action without any thought for his own safety:
“(Carlisa Jones) hollered ‘There goes my baby!’ and Michael just dove in. They said he dove a deep dive in a shallow area. Even though the creek was deep, it was only about five or six feet. As hard as he dove and as deep as he dove … he dove too deep.”
However, although he was able to save the young girl, Patterson ended up hitting a hard surface and broke his neck in three places as well as severing his spine.
Despite these crippling injuries, Patterson still managed to save the girl.
Everyone involved with the case remains surprised by the fact that Patterson managed to successfully rescue the girl given his injuries:
“They don’t know how (he saved her) [...] The little girl was at the bottom, but they saw something push her up. They got the little girl and they didn’t realize what happened to Michael.”
The unwavering heroic display has resulted in Patterson being hospitalized, with his current condition so bad that he remains in intensive care.
To make matters even worse, he has no health insurance to cover the cost of medical care.
However, help does seem at hand thanks to a donation fund set up via Facebook.
Despite his life changing situation, Mike Patterson has become a hero in the eyes of many.
[Image via worldnow]