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Old 12-23-2012, 08:20 PM   #1
SRMN8R OP
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My Last Motorcycle Crash

I've put off writing this for some time.

On Father's Day, 2011 I had my final motorcycle crash.

I've been riding since 1969. I've been down many times over the years. I've broken a bones and dislocated a shoulder, but I've been fortunate. Until Father's Day 2011.

After preaching that Sunday morning, I climbed on my 1999 Honda Aero for a trip up the Blue Ridge Parkway. I was looking forward to a quiet day alone on my bike. My plan was to stop at the Peaks of Otter and reflect on some memories of time spent there with my Dad before he passed away.

Just a few miles away from my church, a car made a left turn off Rt 522 into a driveway. I don't really remember it. As a matter of fact, I don't have many memories of 2011. According to the police report, traffic was light, my speed was estimated to be 50-55 mph, and the weather was clear and sunny.

My brakes were locked as indicated by the skid marks on the roadway.

I struck the right rear wheel of the car that was making the turn.

The force of my body and the motorcycle knocked the axle from beneath the car.

I was transported to the Medical College of Virginia by Med-Flight, where a great team of surgeons operated on me for 9 hours. I sustained "massive blunt force trauma injuries" to my heart, pancreas and liver. My spleen, left lung, and diaphram were ruptured. 10 ribs were broken. 2 fingers were dislocated. Severe concussion. My left knee was shattered. My right lower leg, ankle, and foot were shattered. The tibial artery was severed. Both shoulders were dislocated. Both rotator cuffs were torn.

My trauma surgeon told me that he had never had a person survive with the amount of trauma I had suffered.

After 8 surgeries on my right leg, I am now walking. I'm thankful that my surgeon wouldn't give in when I asked him to amputate my lower leg.

I'm still in physical therapy, and expect to remain there for a few more months.

Everyone seems to be interested in the gear they were wearing and how it protected them, so here's what I was wearing:
  • Red Wing boots.
  • Blue jeans.
  • T-Shirt.
  • Leather work gloves.
  • Brain bucket.
yeah, I left my armored pants at home. My armored jacket was in my saddlebag. I decided to wear my $40 brain bucket instead of my full face helmet, because it was a hot day, and I would be riding at a very leisurely pace.

I only suffered a little road rash on my left elbow, which would have been prevented if I were wearing my jacket.

No massive brain trauma, or spinal cord injuries. Thank goodness!



So... what can I take away from this life altering incident? What have I learned?
  1. I'm blessed. I really believe that God spared my life.
  2. Listen to the still small voice of God. You see, I had an uneasy feeling about riding that day. I ignored it.
  3. My wife is the most amazing woman on the face of this earth. She stayed with me at MCV for 8 weeks. She never once has blamed me or spoken negatively about what happened. She even told me "I understand if you need to ride again."
  4. Grandma used to say, "God looks after sinners and stupid folks." Grandma was right.
  5. Life is good. Very, very good.
  6. Your attitude can give you altitude. It's not what's happening to you, but what's happening through you that really matters.

I've learned a lot of other things through this ordeal, but that's enough for here and now. My wife and son have already gone to bed. I'm gonna go kneel beside my boy's bed and say a quick prayer for him, and go be close to my wife.

Godspeed my friends.

- Jimmy
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Old 12-23-2012, 09:23 PM   #2
folknride
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Godspeed to you Jimmy!
Sounds like you are fortunate to survive a crash we all dread, and take a great attitude away from it.
Of course, we will now wonder if you would have had less serious injuries if you were fully geared up. Maybe less head, knee and lower leg trauma, but who knows??
I hope you make a complete recovery, and can make clear decision, not influenced by your physical status, whether or not to ride again.
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:26 AM   #3
HappyCRNA
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Thank you for sharing your report, it's a great read to start off Christmas Eve. I love your attitude! Good luck with your rehab!
FWIW I graduated from MCV. You were in good hands there.
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Old 12-24-2012, 06:12 AM   #4
Wolfgang55
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Thanks for taking time to share

Read & reread your experience .
Always good to hear from a survivor .
Sure sounds familiar .
I wish I had listened to the little voice .
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Old 12-24-2012, 07:11 AM   #5
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Glad to hear you're still with us. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and your family!
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:01 AM   #6
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Strangely enough, I had my big crash on this exact date...fathers day 2011.

Good to hear you are recovering.
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:09 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by folknride View Post
Godspeed to you Jimmy!
Sounds like you are fortunate to survive a crash we all dread, and take a great attitude away from it.
Of course, we will now wonder if you would have had less serious injuries if you were fully geared up. Maybe less head, knee and lower leg trauma, but who knows??
I hope you make a complete recovery, and can make clear decision, not influenced by your physical status, whether or not to ride again.
There's no amount of gear that will prevent some injuries, and it sounds like the OP had "that" accident where it wouldn't have made very much of a difference in the amount and severity of the injuries he sustained.
To the OP...........glad for you, your wife, and your kid, that you're still around.
As to not riding anymore, if that is what works for you.............more power to ya!

That being said, I sit here typing instead of being out riding because I'm rockin' a full arm cast thanks to the latest in a long list of broken bones.
Me, feh, I'm to addicted (and stupid) to give up riding.

Merry Christmas to all you people of AdvRider!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Chris
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:58 AM   #8
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Doesnt sound like gear have made much of a difference. Leg and knee might have been a bit less worse, but not by much. We are not meant to stop so suddenly. Glad you made it!
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Old 12-25-2012, 12:59 PM   #9
Colemanskeeper
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Jimmy it's great to hear how far you have come in your recovery! I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas.
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Old 12-25-2012, 02:13 PM   #10
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First and foremost, I'm glad you're OK. No one likes to hear about another rider going down, especially when it's someone else's fault.

However, it pains me greatly when people (again; PEOPLE) give years of their lives studying and going to school, then going to work every day to prepare for incidents just like yours, SAVE YOUR LIFE, and you thank "god".

Why people must thank "god" for the doings of other mortals such as paramedics and surgeons is beyond me. Instead of thanking "god" for saving your life, it seems the reasonable person would curse "god" for putting that car in front of you, and thank PEOPLE for giving you your life back.

Again, hope you return as close to 100% as possible and this doesn't happen again.

Merry Christmas
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Old 12-25-2012, 02:50 PM   #11
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Thank GOD

I will thank God first and then the paramedics and docs...

Things happen for a reason, we dont know why bad things happen, but they do...

Hope you get well fast and keep the faith.
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:50 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiteyF View Post
First and foremost, I'm glad you're OK. No one likes to hear about another rider going down, especially when it's someone else's fault.

However, it pains me greatly when people (again; PEOPLE) give years of their lives studying and going to school, then going to work every day to prepare for incidents just like yours, SAVE YOUR LIFE, and you thank "god".

Why people must thank "god" for the doings of other mortals such as paramedics and surgeons is beyond me. Instead of thanking "god" for saving your life, it seems the reasonable person would curse "god" for putting that car in front of you, and thank PEOPLE for giving you your life back.

Again, hope you return as close to 100% as possible and this doesn't happen again.

Merry Christmas
It pains you greatly. Really?

In spite of being astonished by your statement, you do make a point regarding my lack of expressed thankfulness to "mortals."

I am very appreciative for the all volunteer fire-fighters and rescue squad personnel who attended to my needs on scene. I'm appreciative for the MedFlight pilot and crew who stabilized me for transport. I'm appreciative for the surgeons and medical teams who expertly rendered care. And, I'm so thankful to the God of the universe who breathed the breath of life into their lungs, and blessed them with the gift of healing. These wonderful "PEOPLE" did not save my life. God spared my life, and these wonderfully talented "PEOPLE" played a magnificent and mystical role as instruments of His glory in the process.

You see, my faith leads me to believe the god I thank is not simply "god." I thank the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, whose birth we just celebrated. Yes, you even acknowledged His birth in your closing expression "Merry Christmas." Yes, I thank Christ. I thank Him, for without Him I am nothing.

May God bless you in your journey my friend.

- Jimmy
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:53 PM   #13
SRMN8R OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colemanskeeper View Post
Jimmy it's great to hear how far you have come in your recovery! I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas.
John,

Thank you my friend. I hope you had a wonderful day with your family.

- Jimmy
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Old 12-25-2012, 07:03 PM   #14
SRMN8R OP
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Thanks to all

Thank you all for your kind words and responses.

I'm hopeful this thread doesn't turn into something ugly. That certainly is not my intent. I just wanted to share about my crash, and recovery. My moniker "SRMN8R" does reflect my profession. I am an ordained bishop with 18 years of pastoral ministry behind me. My earlier reply was not intended to incite discussion regarding my faith or beliefs, and I really don't want to see this simple thread about surviving a bad crash deteriorate into basement level stuff.

Y'all be careful out there.

- Jimmy
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:59 AM   #15
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Hey man: Thanks for posting. And thanks for your honesty.
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