Local Officer who lost his foot warns others about the dangers of avoiding medical care
SPRING CITY, Tenn (WDEF) – Spring City Police Officer, Sgt. Jeffery Batten recently underwent amputation surgery.
Sgt Batten tells News 12 how type 2 diabetes cost him his foot and how he is working to adjust to a new way of life.”
“I couldn’t imagine that one day I’m working and the next day I’m having my right foot cut off,” says Sgt. Batten.
Being a diabetic since 2003, Batten has continuously struggled with foot problems. But he would have never predicted that what started as a blister on his foot a year ago- led to the total loss of his foot.
Back in 2020, Batten was working at the Graysville Police Department when he noticed an unsettling blister on his right foot. But with a global pandemic, his job needed him. He did like so many of us and ignored what he thought was a small problem.
“It was right in the middle of Covid. We were down probably two officers already. I was working 6-7 days a week. I let a lot of my appointments slide because I thought that work was very important and I had to do that. But I should have done what I was supposed to and gone to the doctor,” says Sgt. Batten.
Sgt. Batten says the fear of going to the hospital during a pandemic also played a big part in why he put off so many of his doctor visits.
But after missing multiple appointments, Batten found himself in the emergency room for a cough- only to find out that he had a more pressing problem. He was advised about the fate of his foot on Thanksgiving Day.
“The doctor came over to talk to me. I thought he was talking about partial amputation but he said no it’s your whole foot. I just got real silent. I turned to the wall and just cried,” says Sgt. Batten.
Sgt. Batten says he regrets not listening to his body out of busyness and fear. Now he wants others to heed his message about neglecting their bodies-loud and clear.
“ I know people with some of these minor cuts and bruises on their legs are diabetic. They have to get to the hospital and get it taken care of because I didn’t and this is where I am at now,” says Sgt. Batten.
Batten is recovering and hopes to soon be walking with a prosthetic. While insurance covers only a limited portion of his bills, a GoFundMe has been set up to help with the rest.