Burn Survivor Heads to D.C.
A Pasco teen is chosen as a candidate to attend a burn camp in Washington D.C.
15-year-old Christopher Rodriguez said he is a burn survivor and that attending this camp is a chance to show people how the challenges he's faced in life have made him who he is today.
What started out as a typical evening 3 years ago when Christopher was home alone making a snack, ended tragically.
"I was making fries in my deep frier and when I tried to put it away, I opened the deep frier and spilled it on my thighs and stomach so I got third degree burns," said Christopher.
Not knowing what else to do, he ran to a neighbors house to tell the neighbor he had burned himself.
The neighbor rushed to him to Kadlec Regional Medical Center and a short time later he was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
A month and 3 surgeries later, he returned to his home in Pasco.
Once he was back in school, Christopher admits he had some trouble adjusting because of his scars.
"I kept on seeing people staring at me and I was calling my mom to go home, I felt weird coming back," said Christopher.
It was a time for Christopher to heal not only physically but emotionally.
That's when his mother signed him up for a regional burn camp just outside of Seattle called Eyabsut.
"He lost his personality for a while and it was kind of scary and it was sad but after going to the camp, especially after each year, he just sparkles," said Kristina Rodriguez, Christopher's mother.
Christopher attends camp Eyabsut every summer and next week he will now attend the International Burn Camp in D.C.
At that camp, firefighters work with more than 40 burn suvivors ages 13-15 to help them understand they're not alone.
"I think it's important for them to realize they're not different, they're the same as other people," said Christopher.
Christopher leaves for the week long camp in the nation's capital Saturday.