FHP trooper hit by suspected drunk driver asks for community’s help

MIAMI (WSVN) - A recovering South Florida trooper struck by a suspected drunk driver is expressing how grateful he is to be alive from his hospital bed.

Florida Highway Patrol trooper Daniel Cruz continues to recover at Jackson Memorial Hospital, and even got a special visit, Tuesday, from someone who can relate to his struggle.

“When I got hit, and they told me, ‘The chopper’s coming,’ I went, ‘This is it. There’s no way I’m going to make it out here,'” Cruz said. “I know that I’m here for something bigger. I have my wife and my son. I have a job to finish.”

The victim’s wife, Janesy Cruz, said she thought the worst. “I couldn’t believe it. I was thinking he’s gonna die,” she said tearing up, “and I have this beautiful little baby that we just had. I was like, ‘God, please, please don’t take him. I need him here.’ It was horrible.”

Cruz was inspecting a two-car crash when he was struck, Sunday morning, on the Palmetto Expressway. Troopers said 26-year-old John Bencosme was driving under the influence when he crashed into one of the cars that struck Cruz.

Cruz will not be able to work for six months, nor walk for a while, and now they’re asking for the community’s help. “It’s going to be a significant financial burden,” the trooper said. “I’m asking for anyone’s help. Anything.”

Fellow troopers have visited Cruz in the hospital, including FHP Trooper Carlos Rosario who was struck on the side of the road along Dolphin Expressway in March.

“He’s here, God did it,” Janesy, who was Cruz’s high school sweetheart before they married, said. “I give the glory to Him. He knows that our baby cannot stay without a father. We need him, and He knew that. He did it, and I thank God.”

Although Cruz is in a difficult situation, he’s remained positive. “I’m not gonna be here depressed and sulking and ‘I can’t work for six months.’ No, I’m alive,” he said. “That’s the important part, and I thank God for everything.”

If you’d like to help the Cruz family, you can donate at https://www.gofundme.com/help-trooper-cruz.

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