Miami-Dade

‘It’s Been Tough’: Wife of Firefighter Who Fell Down Elevator Shaft Shares Road to Recovery

Alejandra Gonzalez said husband David fractured his neck, shoulders, legs and vertebrae in the January fall

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The wife of a Miami-Dade firefighter who is still recovering from fractures all over his body after falling down an elevator shaft last month is speaking out for the first time. 

David Gonzalez was on a rescue call last month at the Neiman Marcus store in the 9700 block of Collins Avenue when the accident happened. 

Alejandra Gonzalez said she panicked and rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital after receiving a phone call that something had happened to her husband. 

“I knew immediately that there was something wrong,” Alejandra Gonzalez told NBC 6. 

She said she was told her husband had fallen three floors down an elevator shaft. 

“It was pretty scary,” she said. “We didn’t know much at that time. We just drove over here and it was chaotic.”

NBC 6's Julia Bagg has the latest from outside the shop in Bal Harbour where it took place.

A helicopter flew David Gonzalez from Bal Harbour shops to the hospital for surgery. 

“When I got here, he didn’t look very good,” she said. “At that point he was super critical and he was fighting for his life.” 

Alejandra Gonzalez said her husband, who has been a firefighter for almost 20 years, fractured his neck, shoulders, legs and vertebrae in the fall. 

“He loves helping others,” Alejandra Gonzalez said. “This is what he loves to do and I can’t even be upset with what has happened.”

David Gonzalez now has to go through physical therapy, to learn small things again, like moving his legs. The recovery process has given Alejandra Gonzalez more responsibilities. 

“It’s been tough balancing everything,” she said. 

A Miami-Dade firefighter was rushed to the hospital after falling down an elevator shaft while responding to a building.

In addition to taking care of the children they have, she makes frequent trips to the hospital, and is watching the medical bills go up.  

“The medical bills have been really hard, just life,” she said. “Everything else that’s going on...it’s going to be difficult for us. This isn’t going to be a short period. This is going to be a long process for us.”

Alejandra Gonzalez said her husband will likely be hospitalized for at least a couple more months.

The family has started a GoFundMe account to help with those medical bills. 

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