A McAllen pastor nearly loses his life in a terrible accident across the border. After several surgeries, he's now recovering at Rehabilitation Center in Edinburg.
Jeremy Valladares is getting a second chance at life and says he's lucky to be alive."The 18 wheeler plowed into us," recalled the McAllen Heritage Baptist Church pastor.
He was involved in a serious accident in Mexico less than a month ago and it left him with several broken bones and bruises.
"As soon as I got to Merida, I wanted to fly home and have the stuff [surgeries] done here because it was kind of like a Saw movie-no anesthesia," described Valladares.
He said the pain is 10 out of 10 and claimed a bullet would have been more bearable.
"It was excruciating pain that I don't wish on my worst enemy," said Pastor Valladares.
He told Action 4 news, the Mexican doctors told him, he couldn TMt TM fly back until he had surgeries completed in both his legs.
Valladares had to wait a little over a week to come home to friends and family.
Meanwhile, thousands of dollars in medical bills continued to rack up.
"I have an angel, who paid for my flight and this person wished to remain anonymous. I am forever indebted to that person, who paid for flight to come home," said Valladares.
He's not only thankful for the anonymous donor, but also for the community that donated and rallied to help bring him home.
Valladares said he's lucky to have survived that accident, but his survival is a testament that God has bigger plans for him.
"It's the little things in life that we take for granted. We take so much for granted. A nurse asked me in Harlingen, 'Are you scared to die?' I said, 'No, I'm scared to not live.'"
Valladares said he's incredibly determined to get back to his healthy lifestyle, and even plans to participate in a half-iron man marathon in the near future.
His doctors tell him, starting January 20th, he will be able to apply weight and once again use his legs.