Dustan Jackson only wanted some chewing tobacco. Instead, as he said on his website, “I was mugged and left for dead. It was the day my life changed.”
Jackson said he and his wife had finished a great vacation in Cancún in February and were at the airport, getting ready to fly back home to the U.S., according to KTTV-TV.
He took a cab to a store to buy chewing tobacco, he said but never got any.
“I’ll never forget that feeling,” Jackson said. “It was the scariest feeling in the entire world.”
When the store did not have what he wanted, the cab driver offered to take Jackson to another store. Instead, the driver kidnapped him, he told the news outlet.
“I get out, and I’m like ‘OK,’ and then as I’m walking in it’s boom, lights out and the next thing I know I’m waking up in a ditch,” he said.
Jackson said a group of men attacked him, and one had a machete.
“They went to cut my Achilles tendon, and they missed and instead of hitting it, they hit the bottom of my foot, and then my foot just flapped around,” Jackson told KTTV. “They were trying to cut all my tendons and leave me for dead.”
By now it was dark. Jackson, who spoke no Spanish, had no idea where he was. He spent hours stumbling around and yelling for help.
He even approached some Mexican police for help, to no avail, he said. He finally crawled under a tarp, expecting to die.
“I don’t know what kind of power it is when they talk about the mental strength that you have as a human being, because at this point however long I was laying there, pretty much just waiting to die, something inside of me, that strength came to me and said ‘You’ve got family, you’ve got kids. Get up,'” Jackson said.
Jackson said he was able to find a female police officer who helped him.
Dustan Jackson said he was kidnapped by a cab driver in Mexico while he was waiting for a flight home. After being attacked by a group of men with a machete, he miraculously made his way home. https://t.co/uQWmdZc75k
— FOX 10 Phoenix (@FOX10Phoenix) October 13, 2022
He made it to the airport and said an African woman whose flight was canceled helped him further.
Jackson said he had four surgeries to address the damage to his foot as well as injuries to one shoulder.
Some of the damage was permanent, he said on another website, TheDustanJacksonStory.com.
“Simple pleasures I used to take for granted now are completely out of the question because I just can’t trust my left arm,” he wrote. “I can’t use it to put on a pair of sunglasses or drink a cup of coffee. Or play catch, with a softball with my daughter.
The attack “not only affected my personal life, but even my business,” he wrote. “I was a contractor, but the injuries to my body have prevented me from doing a lot of my usual activities.” He now has a business creating what he calls “Epoxy art” for kitchen counters, tables and shower walls.
“I take the little times in life, I don’t take them for granted anymore,” he told Fox News. “You just don’t know what life is going to bring you so never give up. Keep going. Everybody has a purpose.”
Jackson has a campaign on Kickstarter, where he hopes to raise $124,000 to take a cast and crew — including a security team — back to the scene of the attack to make a documentary about his experiences.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Posting a link or using information from a donation site does not constitute an endorsement of the fundraising effort.
“I was mugged and left for dead in a ditch for 36-72 hours,” he wrote. “They tried to kill me and left me to die.”
On his own website, the site proclaims, “never give up,” but it also has Jackson asking, “why me?”
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