BOSTON (WPRI) — MBTA Police Officer Richard Donohue returned to the force at the end of March, almost two years after he was nearly killed in a shootout with Boston Marathon bombers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
On Friday, the same day Dzhohkar was sentenced to death, Donohue was promoted to the rank of sergeant.
Donohue was ranked first on the promotion list after taking the exam, and was one of four officers that became a sergeant Friday.
He was seriously injured in a shootout with the Tsarnaev brothers in Watertown, Mass. four days after the bombings. The bullet that struck Donohue severed a major artery, and he lost most of his blood. He also suffered nerve damage.
Donohue spent about a month recovering at Spaulding Rehabilitation Center. He said he still has pain from his injuries, but overall feels healthy as he begins his new role of sergeant.
“Sometimes I think about how crazy it was, how lucky I am to be alive, and how lucky I am that certain people took certain actions. You take one person out of the equation and I might not be sitting here,” said Donohue. “I’ve been back a few weeks now really getting my feet wet. Working for that goal for quite a few years and I’m excited for my new position and excited to see where it takes me.”
Since the shooting, Donohue has used his experience as a way to raise awareness for the need to donate blood to the American Red Cross. After being shot in Watertown, Donohue received more than 40 units of blood to save his life.
This April, he was among those in attendance at the Watertown Strong Blood Drive.