Survivor in chopper crash facing long recovery

Posted at 6:38 PM, Dec 17, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-18 08:17:34-05

Loved ones of the flight paramedic who survived a deadly helicopter crash in Pinal County say his family needs the community's support. 

Derek Boehm suffered serious injuries Tuesday night, including a broken back, broken legs, and broken femur.

He's recovering at Maricopa Medical Center, but friends are worried about the permanent emotional scars he'll keep from that night.

"You don't meet Derek and then forget him, you just don't," said Lena Walker, who worked with Boehm at Florence Hospital at Anthem. She shudders thinking of how close her friend came to death.

"We're all so glad that hes still here. we realize how differently it could have turned out."

Now, she's raising money through a GoFundMe account, so the Marine can focus on healing and getting back to his wife and daughter.

"He's a fighter so he will get through this," she said. 

The federal agency NTSB has taken over the investigation, and say the report could be released in as little as a few days.