Boy Struck by Truck Vows to Skateboard Again

Luke Acuna was riding his skateboard in University Heights when he collided with a city trash truck

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Luke Acuna's leg was amputated after a trash truck struck him in University Heights. On Thursday, he announced that he's on the mend, and may be walking soon.

    A North Park boy who was struck by a garbage truck three months ago and lost his leg is learning how to walk again.

    Luke Acuna, 9, was skateboarding along Meade Ave. and Kansas St. on Nov. 17 when he was struck by the garbage truck.

    Boy Struck by Truck Vows to Skateboard Again

    [DGO] Boy Struck by Truck Vows to Skateboard Again
    The leg of Luke Acuna was amputated after a trash truck struck him in November. Now, he hopes to return home, and with the help of doctors, a mentor, friends and family, Luke hopes to play sports once again. NBC 7 reporter Steven Luke interviewed Luke, his father Anthony, his mentor Travis Ricks and his doctor Andrew Shalsky. (Published Thursday, Mar 1, 2012)

    Acuna was in critical condition, and after several surguries, doctors were forced to amputate his leg. He is now close to going home after spending the last 100 days in Rady Children's Hospital.

    Luke and his parents, Anthony and Doneba Acuna joined doctors on Thursday outside Rady Children's Hospital to announce the Garfield Elementary School student's recovery.

    Accident Victim's Father Speaks

    [DGO] Accident Victim's Father Speaks
    A North Park boy run over by a garbage truck three weeks ago has lost a leg and is facing a long recovery according to his parents. Luke Acuna, 9, is hospitalized in critical condition at Rady Children's Hospital. Kelly McPherson reports. (Published Thursday, Dec 8, 2011)

    "Doctor Shalsky is going to help me learn how to walk, how to run, and how to play sports again," Luke said, "because I am an athlete."

    Luke hopes to continue playing all the sports he loved before the accident: tennis, soccer and frisbee golf, among others. He hopes even hopes to pick up skateboarding once again.

    Child Suffers Major Injuries After Hit by Trash Truck

    [DGO] Child Suffers Major Injuries After Hit by Trash Truck
    Friends of an 11-year-old hit by a city trash truck Thursday say he turned to wave to them just before he was struck by the truck. Medics say he will survive the accident. (Published Thursday, Nov 17, 2011)

    But before any of that, he must learn how to walk again.

    "It's not fun, but it's just one of those things where you have to get through, or else you won't be able to do anything else," Luke said Thursday.

    Already Luke has made significant progress in attaining that goal.

    "A few weeks ago, I couldn't get in my chair by myself," he said. "It was taking a long time, and I tried, but I fell. But now I can do it."

    Doctors are hopeful that he will return to an active lifestyle. In addition to the rehabilitation care he has been receiving at the hospital, he also has a mentor through the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

    Travis Ricks also lost his leg, and has been mentoring Luke throughout his recovery.

    "We want to see him run again," Ricks said. "We want to see him play all the sports he wants to, and we want to provide him the opportunities so he can do those."

    The collision involved a San Diego city trash truck and police say the driver was not at fault. However Luke's family has filed a claim against the City for over $10,000. They believe the driver made an illegal turn.