Support for Aleksander Knysz - Belarusian truck driver. A story of willpower and selfless help
One of the main activities of the E100 Family project is to help truck drivers. Today we want to introduce you to Aleksander, who is in a wheelchair due to an accident. As part of our project, we provided financial assistance to Aleksander in the amount of 5,000 euros..
In summer 2017, a young truck driver from Belarus, Aleksander Knysz, had a serious accident in Bashkortostan. He suffered severe injuries, the list of which gives him shivers, and today he is in a wheelchair. E100 Family talked to Aleksander about prospects, dreams and chances to return to his beloved job.
"I worked as a truck driver and I was very pleased with the job. It was my childhood dream. On 24 June 2017, when I was on the German-Kazakhstan route, I had a terrible accident in Bashkortostan. I suffered severe injuries - I had a crumpled spine that was pressing on the spinal cord. My lungs were badly bruised. I also had stomach surgery because my ulcer burst. The broken vertebrae have been assembled. Only after two months my condition improved so much that I could be transported to my native Minsk.
What do I remember from the accident? I remember the white DAF coming down the mountain, overtaking at high speed. It scraped along a red Scania which hooked with the trailer of my vehicle. When DAF was chasing, I immediately turned sharply towards the side of the road. I started to “fold” sharply on the opposite lane. Finally, the DAF hit the trailer and at the same time it turned the steering wheel into its lane and into the ditch. It hit my cab, so it broke off and the engine frame fell under the trailer. It turned out that the fixtures and the fuel tank broke off.
When I was lying in the hospital, a police investigator came to me with pictures of the accident. He asked me if I remember what had happened. I said I remembered, but it was hard for me to talk about it. He said: ""Don't worry, it's not your fault, we'll explain everything."" When my mom went to the accident site, a married couple approached her. The woman said: ""I heard your child was not guilty."" Later on, no one would come again, and I was taken to my hometown. The investigation continues until today.
At the Minsk RNPC Oncology Center, I had pictures of my cervical vertebrae taken and it turned out that there were complications. They damaged my digestive tract during spinal surgery. I spent the next two months in the chest ward, but could not move my hip joints. The doctors even told me not to touch them. The esophagus healed very slowly. At that time, the hip joints started to stiffen. When I started to move them, my alkaline phosphatase increased and I got fevers.
In October 2018, I went into surgery. The doctors suggested cutting the joints... and that would mean living in a wheelchair. I refused to undergo this operation.
I started to look for other hospitals on my own and I was sending them my history records. I received an answer from one of the clinics in Germany that they were ready to perform such an operation. Its cost was between EUR 60,000 and 100,000 without rehabilitation.
The company I worked for only helped me right after the accident. They transported me to Minsk, gave me 800 euros, and after a year and a half - 1,500 euros.
In time, I realized that I could only count on myself and my loved ones. With the help of family and friends, a charity account was opened for me. We started collecting money for the operation, we created groups in social media. The collection of money for the operation was slow. But when you want something really bad, the universe helps you. In my case, it was a call from E100. I know they're issuing fuel cards because I refuelled with them in my previous job. I found out that there was a charity project within the company that helps in cases like mine. The company gave me EUR 5,000 of financial support. Now I have already collected EUR 11,000. That's not enough for the operation. But I remain optimistic and I believe I can raise the whole amount.
Now I live with my mother and sister. My mother receives a pension to take care of me. My days vary. If I have a chance, I practise in the hall, another time I drive around town with my friends. I spend the rest of my time at home.
My plans for the future are simple: return to normal, start a family and go back to my beloved job. I'd like to build or buy a house and live a full life. I love cars and I miss driving. ""When I look at cars, my heart trembles."" Being a truck driver was my childhood dream.
What are my chances of functioning normally? I hope, they are big. Even the professor's wife said that my life would change after the surgery.
After the accident, I had a hard time with all this. Now, I happen to be in a good mood, but not necessarily another time. I had very little chance of surviving this terrible accident, but I'm alive, I went through so many surgeries and I didn't give up! I am still very young and I would like to live a full life, walk again, go back to my beloved job, start a family. I hope the operation goes well and I'll get back on my feet."