Port Henry Dayton Dedrick may be the luckiest unlucky man alive.
Dedrick, who survived cancer four years ago, had a heart attack last May. Then, in September he was involved in a life-threatening accident.
“It’s a good thing I have nine lives,” he joked.
Dedrick, a Ticonderoga resident, returned to his job as a technology teacher at Moriah Central School this week for the first time since his September accident. That accident caused numerous internal injuries that required surgery and a lengthy hospital stay.
“I’m doing a lot better,” Dedrick said. “My doctor has given me the OK to go back to work. I’m looking forward to getting back to school.”
And his students are looking forward having him back.
To mark his return the Moriah Central School National Honor Society will sponsor a “Donate for Dedrick” blood drive Thursday, Dec. 8, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the school. People are encouraged to schedule an appointment by calling 546-3301 ext. 403 during regular school hours.
“The National Honor Society always sponsors a blood drive in December, but this year when we learned that Mr. Dedrick needed a total of 17 blood transfusions during his time in the hospital, it made us realize just how much blood is actually needed when there is an accident,” said Sue Nephew, Moriah library media specialist and honor society adviser.
Dedrick is thrilled the students are having the blood drive in his name.
“I think it’s really neat,” he said. “I’m honored.”
Dedrick was the focus of benefit efforts in Moriah and Ticonderoga in 2007 when he suffered from Hodgkins lymphoma. He thought he had beaten the disease once, only to have it come back a second time.
After rounds of chemotherapy and a stem-cell transplant he seemed to one the road to good health until his May heart attack and September accident.
Dedrick, age 37, and his wife, Megan, have two sons, Carter and Hayden.