One of News On 6’s own coworkers is finally home after battling COVID-19 since November. Nearly 50 Griffin Communications employees cheered on Randy Smith as he was released from rehab Wednesday.
Randy is the director of our radio sales team and he was very emotional as he left the doors of the rehab center.
He said he's incredibly thankful for all the prayers and well wishes that got him through the past five months.
“First month I don’t remember at all, on a ventilator in the ICU but after that when you’re starting the rehab process you wonder, ‘how did I get hit with COVID this badly and other people don't even know they have it,’" said Randy.
Randy was diagnosed with COVID-19, the day before Thanksgiving. Hours later, he was in the hospital, and spent several weeks on a ventilator.
“When he finally woke up months later, he didn't realize he had missed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas and New Year’s,” said Randy’s wife, Janis Smith.
During his battle, Randy lost all use of his arms and legs and spent several months in a rehab facility learning how to walk again. He said he often thought ‘why me.’
“It is a miracle,” said Janis. “Everyone's prayed and just so many miracles to get him to this point.”
The Griffin Communications Team has been checking on Randy throughout his battle, and his wife, Janis, has been with him every step of the way.
This poster board - filled with pictures of his kids and grandkids - is a constant reminder of why he's fought so hard.
"I looked at it every day and it helped me understand why I am working so hard to get back,” said Randy.
Randy said he hopes his journey shows others the serious impact the virus can have.
"It almost killed me. It took away my limbs, the use of all that, so it’s just something to continue to take seriously and hopefully people will,” said Randy.
140 days after going into the hospital on Thanksgiving Day, now, every day is a day of thanksgiving.
He’s grateful for his family, his medical team, and to be alive.