Five weeks after brutal assault, Mohammadi goes home
After five weeks in recovery, Palisades Market employee Mohammad Fawad Mohammadi was released Thursday afternoon from Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, where he was being treated for injuries sustained in a brutal attack against him and his family last month.
"I'm most excited just to be home with my wife and my baby," he told The Review.
The Afghan immigrant and former translator for the U.S. military smiled brightly as he was wheeled out of the hospital by medical staff and handed off to his wife Nelab and infant son, who then took him back to their Beaverton home for the first time since the March 6 attack that severed his right leg, crushed his hips and fractured his spine.
Mohammadi was visiting the Oregon coast with his family when they were involved in a minor traffic accident while leaving the parking lot of a Walgreens on Highway 101 in Lincoln City. He and his wife exited their vehicle to assess the damage and exchange insurance information when the other driver involved in the accident put his car in reverse and drove toward the couple.
Mohammadi was able to push his wife to safety, but he was struck by the vehicle and pinned between the two cars.
Police said the alleged assailant, Perry G. Nicolopolous, 68, of Puyallup, Wash., put his car in reverse, backed up and then rammed Mohammadi's car again; this time, Mohammadi was able to roll out of the way and call to his wife to get their baby out of the car and run.
The driver then sped away, police said, heading northbound on Highway 101.
Mohammadi was flown by Life Flight helicopter to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland, where he spent time in and out of the Intensive Care Unit. He underwent a series of surgeries, including one in which doctors were forced to amputate his right leg about 6 inches below the knee, and battled an infection that slowed the healing process.
Nicolopoulos was arrested on Highway 101 north of Lincoln City a short time after the crash. He was initially taken into custody on suspicion of driving under the influence and transported to Lincoln County Jail, but he was later charged with attempted murder; assault in the first, second and third degree; reckless endangering; and failure to perform the duties of a driver.
He now faces 12 felony counts and four misdemeanors, and is being held on $1 million bail until an April 30 court date. Officials have asserted that Nicolopoulos was motivated by bias; enhancements to the 16-count indictment would carry a harsher punishment should he be found guilty.
Mohammadi, on the other hand, will now be able continue his recovery in the comfort of his own home. And at the same time, his co-workers at Palisades Market continue to raise funds to help with his medical expenses.
As of Thursday, their GoFundMe account at bit.ly/FawadsFund had raised more than $105,000 toward a goal of $150,000, with contributions from more than 1,800 people. Additional funds have also been raised through checkstand donations at the grocery store.
"It means so much to me, all the love and support," Mohammadi told The Review. "It's incredible to read all the nice comments people have left on the GoFundMe. I try to read every one."