Looking at his scars, it's clear that Alberto Valdes is lucky to be alive. He has deep gashes on his chest and leg from an attack on Memorial Day, and a zipper-like scar running the length of his torso from emergency surgery doctors performed to save his life.
Did he think he was going to die?
"Yes," Valdes said, "I have the feeling I was going to die because nobody was there."
It happened in a parking lot in the heart of Fort Lauderdale's restaurant and bar district, two blocks from the performing arts center, at 5 p.m. A security camera in a nearby alley caught video of the suspects, two young men walking together, as they approached valdes minutes before they attacked.
"Sometimes I say by myself, why it happen to me? I don't deserve, they robbed me $600, I lost my watch, but I still am alive, I have another opportunity," Valdes said.
Valdes is a valet who's been parking cars on Himmarshee Street for 14 years. He says he had found a cell phone, was trying to use it to find its owner, and doing that good deed left him vulnerable. It was a surprise attack while he was preoccupied with the phone.
"Somebody grab my neck from the back, I never saw the guy and they threw me to the ground and in that moment I try to move myself and he feel my wallet and that was the moment when he tell the other guy to stab me twice," Valdes said.
Valdes is already back at work, parking cars downtown.
"Paramedics came so quick, and I was lucky to go to the hospital and make it, I'm a survivor," Valdes said.
A survivor, but just barely. Valdes spent five days in the hospital, and says if not for a woman who happened to pass by, a woman who called 911 immediately, he would've bled to death in the parking lot. Now Valdes says he feels like god has given him a second chance at life.
"Yes, second chance, maybe I going back to my country," the peruvian immigrant said.