7News sits down with recovering Officer Donohue
BOSTON (WHDH) -- The transit officer who was shot during the manhunt for the Boston Marathon bombing suspects opened up about the night he almost died.
He had no pulse. His heart stopped beating, but doctors helped bring Richard “Dic” Donohue back.
Donohue is recovering at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown after being involved in a gun battle with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects. The shootout left the 33-year-old MBTA police officer bleeding in the street. A bullet had severed a major artery in his leg.
“They had their hands inside my leg holding the artery shut because it was so bloody,” Richard Donohue told 7News.
“The only thing I remember [from that night] was roll call. I guess my body shut down the rest of it. I lost so much blood,” Richard Donohue said.
Officer Donohue’s wife, Kim, told 7News that at first, she was unaware of how critical her husband’s injuries were.
“The officer that had come by to pick me up that night had really only told me that he was shot and he was in surgery. I almost, in my mind, expected that I was going to get there and he was going to be wheeled out of surgery and I was going to be saying hello to him and saying, 'how do you feel' -- I didn’t understand. They were handing me his wedding ring. They were handing me his badge and his cell phone,” said Kim Donohue.
Kim Donohue wears bracelets from supporters and is reminded of how much she demanded of her husband’s doctors to get him to this point.
“I grabbed them, probably with my claws, and pulled them to the side and said ‘We have a 7-month-old, don’t come back and tell me anything else. Don’t come back and tell me he didn’t make it through surgery,’” said Kim Donohue.
The bullet is still in Richard Donohue’s leg.
“Probably a permanent souvenir,” he said.
There are reports Officer Donohue may have been struck by friendly fire, but he says the scene was chaotic and his fellow officers acted heroically.
“Obviously I’m hoping it’s from the bad guys, but it doesn’t bother me,” said Officer Donohue.
Officer Donohue’s friend, MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, was killed the same night he was shot. Police say Collier was killed by the bombing suspects. Officer Donohue said he knows he was there, but can’t recall the details.
Officer Donohue is now out of the hospital and at Spaulding in Charlestown. He can now eat, get dressed and take a few steps on his own. He said relearning those skills has come with plenty of frustration.
“There’s been moments where I’ve probably yelled, you know, sworn a few times here or there, right Kim?” said Officer Donohue.
“We apologized to some nurses,” said Kim Donohue.
“There were a couple nurses that had to hear the brunt of it all,” said Officer Donohue. “But after that I usually said, ‘Okay, let’s get this done.’”
Officer Donohue said he is eager to get back to police work.
“The day that he puts that uniform on again is going to be a hard day for me, but it won’t diminish from the pride or respect that I will feel for him,” said Kim Donohue.
The next stop for Officer Donohue is home. He and his family are hoping that could come in a matter of weeks.