CityView Magazine

January/February 2014

CityView Magazine - Fayetteville, NC

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tors. I had school kids and churches writing to me, there was just no way on earth I was going to let them down because they put a lot of work into getting me better," Allen said, "So I was not, in any way, going to fail them." The basic mechanical functions of life, from opening a jar to tying a shoelace, became a big challenge for Rick during and after recovery, "There are a lot of things now that just take forever to do, they are maddeningly slow. Patience has never been a virtue of mine," he laughed, "not by any stretch, and I have had to learn patience on a level that I could not have ever imagined." The recovery process for this sort of injury is extensive; however, Rick was deep sea diving that very year, "I told everybody that I really just wanted to get back to my life, and the only way I could do that was by doing physical therapy and swimming and doing the things I do," explained Allen, "There was no other option really." He now sports a mechanical arm made of carbon fiber, stainless steel, titanium and acrylic resin. Allen said, "I told the prosthetist, Derek Frankena, that I had to have an arm that could go in the ocean. I told him, I don't care what it does but it has got to swim, and he said ok." Its plier-like hand is less for day-to-day use and more for handling heavy camera equipment, and the materials are slow to erode in a salt water environment. Since 95 percent of amputations are lower body and only about 5 percent are hands or arms, he was a minority within a minority. Because of this, the technology for leg and feet prosthetics has come along at a quicker rate than the technology for arm and hand prosthetics. Allen explained, "Mine is a very basic, mechanical arm. The design is technically turn of the last century, but the materials are state of the art." Rick has been a project videographer for 15 years at Queen Anne's Revenge, the sunken flagship along the coast of North Carolina that likely belonged to the English pirate, Blackbeard. "That has been a huge part of my life," said Allen. Nearly every weekend, Rick puts on his dive gear, jumps out of a boat and swims around the deep end of the pool. "After diving for 30 years, I kind of have a routine and having the prosthetic arm has thrown that off," Allen said then continued, "So I have been learning a new routine and, finally, this summer it has kind of fallen into place." Nautilus Productions is currently working on a series of videos for Cape Fear Valley and will start working on a new shark film, hopefully, next summer, "I actually got a call today from one of the dive operators and they said, 'Look we have a couple wrecks with at least 200 sharks on them right now.' So I am going to go Saturday to see if we can catch them," said Allen with a big smile, "I will be doing that and, you know, whenever the phone rings, whatever fun thing happens after that." CV Luxury Smoking Lounge PREMIUM CIGARS Monte Ad (CA).c_Layout 1 12/13/13 4:56 PM Page 1 Scotch, Whiskey, Wine & Craft Beer Bar e of e th v o r . nc ri e e r fl a ri s to pe c E x b in d o n te tw is t le y M a r y s s ic . ub b n d o n te lu ti o d c la o M re v o lo v e A a be on od Am ic lass c ern Walk-In Humidor Largest Selection of Premium Cigars in the Region Join the fun www www.montecristosocialclub.com ww. t to www.montecristosocialclub.com Smoke. Drink. Be Social. Monte and Montecristo are trademark registered by Altadis U.S.A. Inc. or one of its subsidiaries in the U.S. Pat & TM Office. This trademark may be registered by others in other countries. 320 N. McPherson Church Rd. 910.864.5705 • www Ansteads.com 9 PT ADVERTISING (LESS THAN 15 SQ. IN.) 11 PT ADVERTISING (15 TO LESS THAN 65 SQ. IN.) CityViewNC.com | 27

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