WASHINGTON, DC — February 5, 2017 — "Max Impact: A Story of Survival” not only tells the story about an unfathomable crash with a sole survivor but tells a heroic tale of rescue and friendship from the perspectives of those who lived it.
On January 10, 2005, at approximately 11:13 p.m. LifeEvac 2 plummeted from 200 feet, with a maximum impact from the force of speeds in the excess of 140 miles per hour into the ice-cold waters of the Potomac River.
“People often call me a hero for surviving the crash, but I am not a hero for surviving — the only person I saved was myself and I didn’t do it alone.” Author Jonathan Godfrey said. “The heroes were the people who came to my rescue that night.”
"Max Impact: A Story of Survival" is a true novel from the perspective of DC, Maryland and Virginia emergency responders, and Godfrey.
“It was a challenge to relive the crash and the years of struggle afterward — and now seeing this in print and knowing people are reading it is surreal,” Godfrey said. “I have never once claimed to be perfect, heroic, or special, but I know there is a plan for me far larger than I ever had for myself.”
Godfrey awoke submerged in 38-degree water, strapped to his seat, at the bottom of the Potomac River after surviving one of U.S. history's most notable fatal helicopter crashes. The crash resulted in the loss of pilot Joseph Schaffer and paramedic Nicole Kielar, but Godfrey made it his life's mission to ensure their lives weren't lost in vain.
“Not a day passes that I do not think of Nikki and Joe,” he said. “They both were heroes for all they accomplished while they were on earth. I admired and looked up to both of them.”
Coauthor MJ Brickey said it was an honor to interview rescuers and close friends of Godfrey. She said she enjoyed learning about the full lives of Joe and Nikki.
"I learned through speaking to professionals in the HEMS industry that Nikki was a well-known and respected Virginia paramedic and Joe was a decorated Vietnam pilot," Brickey said. "Jonathan talks about Nikki and Joe every day. When he says 'Never Forget' and 'Vigilance, my friends,' he means it. He cannot forget and he wouldn't if he could."
Godfrey climbed back into the helicopter a year after the crash returning to his life-saving flight community. After more than 11 years of hard work, dire hardships, divorce, raw-world survival, and absolute resilience, Godfrey continues saving lives not only from a helicopter but also with his hard-hitting public speaking presentation "Max Impact: A Story of Survival."
The book “Max Impact: A Story of Survival” is now available on Amazon and readers can also purchase a signed copy direct by visiting TheMaxImpact.net.