Man Who Shot Face Off Gets Transplant

Richard Norris was 22 when he accidentally shot himself in the face with a shotgun. He doesn’t remember much of the incident, but his mother said it was an accident. For fifteen years, Norris was considered a freak, as he did look like someone who’d had his face blasted off. He separated himself from society for a decade. He and his parents went to the extent of covering all the mirrors in the house. He even wore a black mask on certain occasions when he came out.

Then one day Richard’s mother was searching online and found Eduardo Rodriguez, a reconstructive facial surgeon. He promised Richard he would be normal again. After twelve surgeries, Richard was still far from normal. Rodriguez had a greater idea in mind. He had been practicing face transplants only on cadavers, but was confident it would work. The surgery started at dawn on march 19, 2012. The face of a deceased 21- year-old came off in one solid flap. It took thirty-six hours for the surgery to be complete. when he came out it was a miracle.

Norris, now 38, must take lots of medicines that lower his immune system so that his body doesn’t reject the new blood vessels, muscles, and nerves that were attached to his skull.  He has trouble with drooling and his expressions don’t really change, but he can go out in public now and even says  he has a girlfriend.