Checotah assistant police chief remains in ICU after a wreck on an icy road

TULSA -- The assistant police chief at the Checotah Police Department remains in an intensive care unit after he was badly hurt Sunday during a crash along an icy road.  

Justin Durrett already underwent two neck surgeries at St. Francis Hospital in Tulsa. Doctors told his loved ones that he has a bruised spinal cord as well, and he has no feeling right now to his feet.

Fellow officers, family members and close friends are staying close by his side at the hospital. 

"We don't know what to expect," Margaret Prokup, Durrett's mother, said. "We'll just take it a day at a time, and we know God will carry us through. He always has. He's always faithful." 

Prokup got a call early Sunday morning when her son did not show up to provide security at the gas well explosion site in Quinton. Other members of law enforcement began calling around, and eventually his vehicle was found. 

Haskell County Sheriff's Deputy Misty Johnson came across his truck on the side of State Highway 71, just south of Enterprise. She initially thought it was a vehicle abandoned overnight because of the icy conditions, but then she heard Durrett's cell phone ringing as well as him calling for help.

His vehicle had flipped after he drove over some black ice on the highway. He was ejected, and the vehicle rolled on top of him and pinned there for 45 minutes until Johnson arrived. 

Sheriff Tim Turner credits her for saving Durrett, who has been one of his best friends since childhood.

"(Johnson) was just traveling down the road going home, getting off shift, going home, taking a road she normally doesn't take and stumbled across him," Sheriff Turner said. "She's a hero today for finding him on the side of the road and we're blessed she found him because that's the reason he's alive, we believe." 

Durrett's parents are asking the community to provide plenty of prayers right now, but they said they know their son is fighting especially hard to get better for his two young children.

"They're ready to see their dad when they can," Prokup said. "He's ready to see them, and I know that's going to be the big pushing point for him to get well." 

An online fundraiser has been set up now to support Durrett and his family during this lengthy road to recovery. If anyone would like to donate, here is the link: https://www.gofundme.com/assistant-chief-justin-durrett

 

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