One year after being shot in the head, man's recovery continues to stump doctors

SAN DIEGO - Will Barton continues to stump doctors with remarkable strides in his recovery. Tuesday marked one year since Barton was attacked and shot at random in the shoulder, throat and head on Upas Street in Hillcrest.

He was not expected to survive the ambulance ride to the hospital.

"It's almost like, I'm celebrating my life, rather than the fact that I almost died, you know," Barton told 10News in an interview Tuesday.

Barton was the victim of 40-year-old Philip Hernandez's violent crime spree that terrorized San Diego last October. Hernandez was killed during a gun battle with police. Officers arrested his teenage girlfriend.

"If you have a black eye, and you look at yourself in the mirror, you remember that you were punched," Barton said. "But talking about it and thinking about it isn't going to make that black eye go away and quicker."

Instead, Barton says he uses those thoughts as motivation. He has been going through very expensive and exhausting therapy and has recently been able to start walking on his own.

"Now my balance and stamina is conducive with pushing my limits and seeing how far I can take this," Barton said. "And I have the rest of my life to recover so ... I will never stop."

A fundraiser will be held in Barton's honor on Friday, Nov. 1 to help raise funds and support for patients recovering from traumatic brain injuries.

The first annual "Strong Will" fundraiser and golf tournament will be held at the Crossings at Carlsbad. For more information, call (619) 846-9995

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