Albany Airport firefighter battling sepsis released from hospital

March 20, 2019 06:41 PM

ALBANY -- One of the first things Josh Woodward did as he was brought out of St. Peter's Hospital in Albany was to take several deep breaths of fresh air.

He was outside, after calling the hospital home for about six weeks. 


There to greet him as he was released, was a crowd of supporters. 

It's been a tough road. 

He almost died because of sepsis and had to have several surgeries.

His right hand was amputated, as were all his toes. 

And through it all, his wife Chelsea has given frequent, detailed updates on Facebook.  Her posts are followed by tens of thousands of people. 

She spoke to NewsChannel 13's Subrina Dhammi Tuesday about news of his discharge. 

"Feels twilight zoney.  We've been on such a roller coaster ride, we're both cautious about it.  We hear the word home and we're like, do you mean it? Really, we're leaving?" she said. 

As he left the hospital Wednesday afternoon, someone called him a rock star. 

It was all smiles. 

"It's great," said Albany Airport Fire Chief David Cook.  "It's been a long six weeks, a lot of ups and downs.  We've been behind him 100 percent."

Family, friends, and fellow firefighters gathered on short notice-- all eager to celebrate this milestone in the Albany Airport firefighter's recovery. 

"I think he loved it," said Chief Cook.  "Because he liked it when guys came to see him. He always asked for guys to come visit him, so we went as much as we could."

He seemed happy to see the crowd, and called out, "thanks, everybody!" with a wave. 
"The whole community as a whole has really helped us out," said Chief Cook.  "And it's much appreciated by the family and us."

Josh is not headed home yet-- he went to Sunnyview Rehabilitation-- but this was a big day in his recovery. 

Watch the video to see the moment he was released from the hospital.


Kumi Tucker

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