October 9th, 2008
02:40 PM ET

CNN HERO: 'I am just one guy'

Program Note: CNN Heroes received nearly four thousand submissions from 75 countries. A Blue Ribbon Panel selected the Top 10 CNN Heroes for the year, and over 1 million of you voted for your CNN HERO OF THE YEAR

A Global Celebration: Thanksgiving Night at 9p ET


David Puckett's PIPO Missions brings prosthetic and orthotic care to people of southeastern Mexico - free of charge.
David Puckett's PIPO Missions brings prosthetic and orthotic care to people of southeastern Mexico - free of charge.

David Puckett | MY STORY

Wow…I don’t know how to start…to have been selected as one of the ten honored Heroes – Of course I am honored, shocked, and just plain speechless…and if you ask any of my employees or friends of mine they would say that is a wow in itself.

While I am honored and flabbergasted (I know that this word is hardly used anymore)… I am excited about being chosen as one of the ten finalists in the CNN Heroes program. We will be able to improve and increase our outreach with a lot more money on the Medical Mission field in Mexico. Our goal has been to start a clinic where we can counsel, treat and deliver artificial limbs and orthopedic braces and store the supplies brought down there. This would be in Chiapas…the poorest per capita region in Mexico.

When this whole thing started, I thought, “Hmmm…this is interesting and a really cool program that CNN has put together, but I am just one guy going down to remote areas in Mexico doing what I love to do…help those who cannot help themselves and I am fortunate and blessed enough to be the mechanism through which to reach out the hand of God in love.”

When I started reading the responses from donors and those interested in our program along with the comments on the CNN website, it about made me cry. I couldn’t believe the people’s wonderful comments and compliments. I had NEVER had such a barrage of compliments in my entire life. How honored and yet at the same time – how small I felt, as I read these wonderful comments from such wonderful people.

These last 8 weeks since this whole thing started, I have been swamped with new ideas about the missions outreach. We have always sought to treat as many patients as we could “afford” to see…that usually amounts to between 20-30 patients per trip. We currently are fabricating over 20 legs, arms and braces for patients that we have seen over the last 6 weeks in Merida, the outlying villages and Chiapas.

We are still fielding the enormous amount of phone calls, emails and letters of interest that we have received since the CNN story broke.

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Filed under: CNN Heroes
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Dana

    Hello what a wonderful thing you have done. I have read your articles but I am not sure if you only help in Mexico. I know of someone that is a double amputee and is in need of some assistance in getting some prosthesis. He is also in need of hands he has no fingers on his hand. If you can contact me with information as to what I need to do or what this person needs to do to get some assistance. We live in Atlanta, Georgia.

    April 22, 2009 at 9:36 pm |
  2. Michele

    To Anderson and the CNN team:

    CNN Heroes is the best programming I have wiitnessed in years. How heartwarming, engaging and inspiring it was to watch your nominees in action. I have always believed that if each of us signifcantly touched one life, we could make a global difference. Your program made me realize how many individuals are touching so many lives with so little. I feel hopeful and empowered.

    I have only one small criticism. I felt that the good works of each person were diminished by teh "contest: format. Having one "winner" marginalized the achievements of the others. I would recommend eliminating the "big" prize next year and simply distributing those funds equally. I also noticed that the winner was the only person doing work in the US, which took away the "global" feeling of the event.

    Otherwise, you did a brilliant job.

    December 1, 2008 at 12:28 pm |
  3. Hannah

    It was interesting how he was the only person that acknowledged God and credited unto him all the good that was done. Nothing good comes out of ourselves, but is the reflection of God who is the source whom in which good is perfected.

    November 29, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  4. Jerry Whitton

    David Pucket's acceptance was a real testimony to his faith and he was giving all of the credit to God rather than himself. I was really touched by his words.

    November 29, 2008 at 10:11 pm |
  5. marian hollins

    David great work you,re doing in mexico,I thank God for what he has callled you to do.I have a question ,Do you make braces for peoples in GA. with low income for free. thank you and keep up the great work you,re doing Marian Hollins

    November 29, 2008 at 2:32 pm |

    Thanks for giving to us all the heroes, Outstanding Job as usual, my heart went out especially to Dr. David Puckett for what he is doing take care and God Bless.

    November 29, 2008 at 12:24 pm |

    David is my CNN HERO of the Year, its amazing what he is doing to help so many see hope, and have a bright future.
    God Bless

    November 29, 2008 at 12:22 pm |
  8. Monica

    I just saw David recieving his award, it brought tears to my eyes.
    so inspiring!
    God's love is within you Mr puckett.
    Praise our heavenly father for his goodness =)

    November 29, 2008 at 5:35 am |
  9. Beatriz

    These stories and accomplishments are very welcoming and needed during these hard times. We need to focus on the good that individuals are doing all around the world and help us move from our constant lament to one that is proactive in helping others.
    To David, I want to thank you on behalf of my country for your generous acts of love, you moved me to tears. To see that a foreigner chose my country to help has impacted me to believe I too can touch another life in a profound way. Great domain of the spanish and native language too!! Thank you again for the inspiration.

    November 29, 2008 at 12:26 am |
  10. Juan M Cardenas

    I watched CNN heroes ....and while all profiles were heartwarming, the lady feeding kids in cd. Juarez, the 2 ladies that built schools in cambodia, and africa, and so on.....but your profile made me cry when i saw the 70 plus old man walk for the 1st time.....while im by no means rich, nor well to do, i'd like to donate to your god-inspired cause, how do i? regards God bless

    November 28, 2008 at 11:47 pm |
  11. Laurie Martin

    Great story about David Puckett. We need to do more stories about humans reaching out and helping others!!!! He is doing amazing work in this world. Doing heart felt work is an expression of our true selves. If we all did more of this kind of work, we would live happier lives. You can see how happy David is in his work. Good for him for creating his own path, doing something different, and following his heart.

    Kudos to you Anderson for looking for the good in this world and not just focusing on the negative. I believe there is many more miracles and beauty to discuss, focus on and live in.

    Big Blessings,
    Laurie Martin

    November 17, 2008 at 6:06 am |
  12. Carmen

    Congratulation David for this cause.I would like to donate a prosthetic leg is new I need more information.Please tried to reach me in my e-mail Thank you

    November 13, 2008 at 8:01 pm |
  13. Susan

    Bravo to this man and all 10 heroes named. I wonder if they would be willing to tell us who they are going to vote for and why?

    October 9, 2008 at 2:53 pm |

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