Patrick Hardison was fighting a mobile home fire in Senatobia, Mississippi, in 2001 when he got trapped inside. The flames melted his face mask, and when the other firefighters pulled him out, his face was still on fire.
He spent the next two months in the hospital, and had more than 70 surgeries over the next decade. But the doctors couldn’t reconstruct his eyelids, ears, and more.
Everything changed in 2012, when Hardison met Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez — a plastic surgeon now at New York University Langone Medical Center.
“Despite all of his injuries, he tried to fight, to be a productive member of society, to be a good father for his family,” Rodriguez said at a press conference on Monday. “He persisted.”
So the two decided to try a full face transplant to get Hardison’s life back to normal.