Injured Navy veteran overcomes odds during pandemic by learning to walk again

Navy veteran overcomes odds during pandemic

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - After suffering an accidental gunshot wound to the head, Navy veteran Malik Jones was determined to walk again.

“I felt like my life was over," said Jones.

Several years ago, he had an accidental gunshot wound to the head, which caused him to be in a coma for several weeks.

“I asked, ‘what am I doing here, where did I come from,’” Jones.

Jones had no recognition of that night. He said he thought he fell asleep on the job as he served as a hospital corpsman while in Navy.

Navy Veteran Malik Jones
Navy Veteran Malik Jones (Source: NBC12)

“I woke up in the hospital and thought I was at work,” said Jones.

In three years, he spent over 10 months in a hospital and underwent five brain surgeries.

“They said I will be in a wheel chair, best case I have to use a cane forever. But they don’t know what they’re talking about, they don’t have the final say," said Jones.

Determined to recover, Jones overcame paralysis on the entire left side of his body and fought everyday in rehab with one thing on his mind, family.

“I went to the Navy to be an example for them, so I wasn’t going to let me get hurt stop that,” said Jones.

After making so much progress, fighting to be an example for his family, COVID-19 put a stop to his therapy.

Navy Veteran Malik Jones in therapy rehab

“All my appointments got canceled, so I was just in the house,” said Jones.

Jones says it was tough not having his therapist around helping him exercise, so he decided to take matters into his own hands and started his own therapy.

“I decided that I’m about to start walking every morning.”

Step by step, Jones gradually started to regain his confidence back as he continued his journey.

“I kept pushing forward, trying to get my fitness back up, and I got up to doing three to four miles every morning,” said Jones.

Now Jones is living on his own in Richmond, working and doing all things his doctors thought he would never be able to do again.

“I’m walking better than other people who don’t have a disability. I’m walking four miles a day, so I’m blessed,” said Jones.

Jones is currently taking classes at Virginia Union University. He says once he graduates, he wants to start a brain injury summer camp for adults to help them deal with depression.

Navy Veteran Malik Jones in recovery after his accidental gunshot wound to the head.
Navy Veteran Malik Jones in recovery after his accidental gunshot wound to the head. (Source: NBC12)

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