FIRST ON 13: Recovering Albany Airport firefighter discusses sepsis that nearly killed him

April 17, 2019 06:45 PM

It has been two weeks since Josh Woodward returned home after nearly dying when he developed sepsis. The Albany Airport firefighter sat down exclusively with NewsChannel 13's Subrina Dhammi about what life is like now and those first moments when he opened his eyes in the hospital.

Woodward is getting stronger and more independent every day.


"My full-time job is just getting back to 100 percent," said Woodward.

Now, he's ready to tell his story about his near death experience and that harrowing time in the hospital when he developed sepsis and was in a coma for 10 days.

We asked him about the first thing he remembers when he woke up.

"I was ready to go. I was like, ‘Alright, I'm awake. I guess I can go home now.' So I kept trying to get out of the bed and the nurses were getting frustrated at me. They were like, ‘No, Josh' - and they'd take my feet and put them back in the hospital bed.

For several more weeks, Woodward went on a roller coaster ride of more treatments and operations. His journey followed so closely by tens of thousands of strangers, through his wife Chelsea's Facebook posts.

We asked if there was ever a point where he questioned if he was going to make it.

"I don't think I questioned whether or not I was going to make it. I think I just got real discouraged, because I was like how long is this going to last," he replied.

When he hit his lowest points, he held on to his faith and to his two young children, Holland and Jax.

Now home, his wounds where his toes and right hand were amputated are still healing - and Woodward is now on the move, preparing snacks for his kids and even folding laundry - with one hand.

His plans for the future?

"I want to get back to just the way life was. I've been told I'll be able to walk again and run again -- which is great, because I used to love to run," he said.

He wants to start a foundation called "Woodward Strong" for first responders who have gone through major battles with their health - drawing strength to help them from his own survival.

Watch more of Subrina's interview with Woodward on Thursday morning at 6 a.m.

Hear what he has to say about his wife, Chelsea, as well as how his 3-year-old daughter describes what happened to her dad.


Subrina Dhammi

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