Which was true. It wasn’t asthma, but a collapsed right lung. And that wasn’t the worst of Jonathan’s problems. He’d injured his brain in three separate places. The innermost layer of his carotid artery had collapsed. And he’d broken six ribs, a wrist, and most of the large bones south of his waist – his pelvis, the left femur, a tibia and fibula, and both ankles. For days, they pulled pieces of his shattered dashboard from his left knee.
The drunk driver who crossed four lanes of traffic to strike Jonathan head-on?
Treated and released for minor injuries. The courts gave him a year in jail – he served a total of 10 months – and five years’ probation.
Jonathan, however, was left to lead a life of pain and suffering. But he counts Hope Network among the players who helped him come back from the brink of death.
Jonathan spent his early years in Eaton Rapids, the son of a schoolteacher mom and a police officer. He grew up mostly in Portage, where his father Daniel serves as a patrolman today.
Jonathan, 29, comes from a long line of proud men and women who have spent their working lives in law enforcement – father, uncle, aunt and a cousin. And so it became his lifelong dream, one he was well within reach of when the accident changed the bearing on the compass he’d set so many years prior.
Even as a student at Parchment High School, he aspired to be an officer, earning a scholarship to Kalamazoo Valley Community College from a law enforcement organization in that same county.
One of his first jobs as a young adult was as a security officer for a mall near his home. After that, he worked for the Kalamazoo Probation Enhancement Program, helping to coordinate efforts for inmates at a halfway house.
“I’ve just always had a huge interest in law enforcement,” he says.