SDPD officer's recovery reaches new heights: James 'Chappie' Hunter rode jet pack over Mission Bay
Money raised for Challenged Athletes Foundation
Last Updated: 71 days ago
SAN DIEGO - A veteran San Diego police detective took his recovery to new heights on Sunday, riding a jet pack above Mission Bay.
Surrounded by a team of experts in Mission Bay, James "Chappie" Hunter suited up and headed out to his first ever jet pack adventure.
In June, the 41-year-old San Diego police officer was headed home on his motorcycle when he was struck head-on by a 15-year-old driver on Alpine Boulevard. He suffered multiple injuries and lost part of his left leg but that has not stopped him from taking life on -- full throttle.
"I'm doing amazingly great," he told 10News.
A little more than three months after the crash, he is set to get his prosthetic leg.
"Leg is coming along very well," he said. "I've already stood once for the first time last week and I'll be walking later this week for the first time."
Chappie was all smiles during Sunday's event to raise money for his medical bills and for the Challenged Athletes Foundation. People could pledge $1 for every foot Chappie was in the air.
His wife says his positive spirit has been a blessing.
"After the accident, I was worried but he puts all my worries aside because he's so happy and he's recovering well," she said.
But there have been some tough times.
"It's been a little bit of a struggle especially in the beginning ... just kind of getting used to what's going on with me and having to relearn a lot of new things," said Chappie.
He added, "The support is what has kept me going and keeping me smiling … Family, friends, people on the department have been amazing to me."
Chappie says he is hopeful to return to light duty with the police department in November and go back full-time next summer.
Sunday's event raised more than $1,000.
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