A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help a construction worker who was severely injured in Durham last month.
Jesse Zimmer suffered horrific injuries when a piece of steel fell five stories and landed on him, according to Durham police. He was in a portable toilet on the worksite at 400 Morris Street when the incident happened Nov. 8. Durham police said the beam crushed the portable toilet when Zimmer was inside it. His co-workers rushed to his aid where they found him not breathing and his hard hat cracked in three places.
Zimmer was taken to Duke University Hospital and he remains there for treatment. Zimmer has made limited progress but he has responded with facial expressions, according to the GoFundMe post. The next step in his recovery will be at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia. That center is well known for rehabilitating patients with serious brain injuries.
“Jesse is *the guy* that gives his all to every single aspect of his life,” the post said. “He was proud of a hard day of work and he was oblivious to what would happen.”
The GoFundMe page for Zimmer and his family was started Thursday with a $25,000 goal. In its first two hours, $225 was raised from nine donors. After the first day, the total was just short of $3,300 after 23 people donated.
Zimmer’s mother has been by his bedside at Duke Hospital for the last month.
“Jesse needs his family by his side for encouragement and this has been devastating to them in every way,” the post said. “He is a beloved son, brother, uncle, and friend.”
Zimmer was employed as a plumber working for Acme Plumbing and Heating Company. Acme was contracted by Barnhill Contracting Company, which is constructing the building. The construction site is part of the Durham Innovation District, which is a large-scale mixed-use project near Durham Central Park.