Community Rallies Behind Oklahoma Man Injured By Fireworks
OKLAHOMA CITY - The firework explosion nearly blew away the left side of Taron Pounds' face.
He went through another surgery for his injuries this morning in Oklahoma City.
But his mom says he's a fighter, and she's proud of how his friends have rallied in support.
Pounds, 22, is a talented jazz guitarist and a devoted friend.
Last Saturday he was at a wedding. After, he and his family went outside to celebrate with fireworks, but something went horribly wrong—the firework exploded on the left side of his face.
"The inside of his mouth, the upper part, is missing. It was just blown away," Pounds' mother, Tammy Cauthron said.
She said her son has lost his left eye. They're not sure if he can see out of his right eye, his jaw is broken, and he has a hole in his cheek.
"He's a fighter," Cauthron said. "He's been in a medically induced coma since he got here and he's fighting so hard to get out of it. He actually comes out of the coma."
Even as we were talking with Cauthron, while her son was in surgery, she got some good news.
Doctors called to ask her permission to rebuild his jawbone—just one more step for her to celebrate.
"Oh, it's a million answered prayers, I promise you," Cauthron said.
She said another answered prayer is all the support they've gotten from the community.
Northeastern State, where Pounds goes to school, is hosting a car wash fundraiser in Tahlequah on Sunday. And at Chili's, where he works, a portion of the proceeds of the sales on September 4 go to help Pounds with his medical bills.
"This is our way of, hopefully, letting him and his family know that we're trying to help in any way that we can," said Melissa Davis, Pounds' manager at Chili's
Cauthron says all of that support is what's helping the family get through a very difficult time.
"The people, the support is—to say it's overwhelming - that sounds negative - but it is. It's overwhelming," Cauthron said.
The car wash fundraiser will be on Sunday at O'Reilly Auto Parts in Tahlequah, and the Oklahoma Blood Institute is holding a blood drive in Taron Pounds' honor at the home and garden show in Tulsa in two weeks.
Taron Pounds' family has set up a Facebook page where you can keep up with his recovery and make donations.