ST. GEORGE — A Mormon missionary severely injured in the bombing attack at the Brussels airport March 22 returned home to Utah Saturday.
Richard Norby, 66, of Lehi, serving as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Paris, suffered second-degree burns, broken bones and severe trauma from shrapnel in his lower leg as a result of the bomb blast. He was subsequently put in a medically-induced coma.
Norby returned to the United States with his wife Pamela by his side via an air ambulance plane, his family said in a statement issued Saturday. He was admitted to the University of Utah Medical Center in Salt Lake City where he is receiving continued care for his burns and shrapnel wounds.
Earlier in the week, Norby had his feeding tube removed and returned to enjoying solid foods, his family reported, adding that Norby has been making positive strides in his recovery.
After a lengthy surgery, shortly after the bombing, Norby was placed in a medically induced coma and would remain in this state for several days with a lengthy recovery expected.
While hospitalized in Brussels, Norby came down with a serious infection.
“Elder Norby remains in a Belgium hospital’s ICU,” the family said in an April 8 statement. “He continues to deal with the serious effects of infection and injury from shrapnel and the progress is slower than we had anticipated.”
Norby had gone to the Brussels airport with three other missionaries when two bombs went off.
The blast of the bomb broke Norby’s left leg and left heel and embedded shrapnel in his body, according to the Mormon Newsroom. He suffered second-degree burns to the face, head, ears, leg and backs of his hands.
The three other missionaries suffered second-degree burns and other serious injuries during the blast.
Joseph “Dres” Empey, 20, of Santa Clara, and Mason Wells, 19, of Sandy, have both since returned home to Utah. Fanny Clain, 20, of Reunion Island, France, was released from a hospital in Antwerp on Tuesday.
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