Some of you may have heard of Lonnie Tucker. he used to race for Yeti, even had his own line of bikes for awhile. He recently moved to Missouri and I've gotten to know him. Yesterday I got this e-mail from him that really shook me up. This is a super-experienced guy who has been into mountain bikes for years. The trail he was riding has only about a mile of rough stuff, most of it is jeep road or flat stuff. Just goes to show, you never know what's going to jump out and bite you.
Well...I don't know how to start this crazy tale. You would not believe it
if I told you. Talk about crazy! I went for a mountain bike ride last
Wednesday with my best friend and his 11 year old son at the Lost Valley
State Park just down the street about 7 miles from my house. The park has
one big loop that is 10.5 miles long. About 3.5 miles from the finish his
son had a rear flat tire. I told them that I always keep spare tubes and a
tire pump in my car in case I see a cyclist stranded on the side of the
road. Just trying to be a good cyclist.
So, I set out alone to cover the rest of the trail and to retrieve the tube
and pump for them. About a quarter of a mile from the parking lot I spotted
what appeared to be small broken tree branches in front of me on the gravel
jeep trail. As I approached the material I thought they looked like bones.
Bones? Moving at approximately 24 mph I tried to maneuver around the bones
clipping the head of what appears to be a large femur bone. The bone clipped
my front wheel and ended up taking half of my spokes with it as it exploded!
My forks dropped into the ground and sent me and my favorite bicycle into
I woke up to find a nice pool of blood where my face had been resting for
who knows how long..I was still clipped into my pedals and blood was
everywhere. I knew from the cold numbness in my left shoulder that something
was broken. Not a good sign! I managed to unclip from my pedals and
struggled to get to my feet. My bike was trashed! I was covered in blood and
bleeding from places that used to be covered by skin. I walked around and
found the bone that sent me to the ground. A big bone! My helmet is
destroyed, but it did its job and saved my melon from really being squashed!
...At 2:45 AM Thursday I walked out of the hospital with a broken left
clavicle with all sorts of shoulder damage...will learn more on Friday after
seeing the specialist! Concussion with several facial fractures...some kind
of orbital lobe? Above and below the left eye. Not good. Fuzzy vision and a
really bad headache. Oh well...Checked back into hospital on Sunday
with extreme headaches and excessive clear liquid draining from my nose.
After several CT and MRIs the doctors found that I had also fractured the
back of my skull where the spinal cord attaches. The clear liquid was spinal
fluid. That's nice! You know your having a bad day when you have spinal
fluid coming out your nose!
So...No activities for several weeks. Lots of steroids, antibiotics and pain
killers! That sounds like a party with Barry Bonds! Ha Ha Ha! At least I can
still laugh. Ouch! I thought I could. No MS 150 for me this year. However, I
will be sending my money for the jersey on Monday, Sept. 4, 2006. This will
be included with the Cuivre River Photograph Contest information and
materials. Sorry for the delay. I have been out of the office for a few
days. Thanks again. Always wear a helmet! Ride hard and have fun. See you on
the trail in 6 to 8 weeks!
Here's a pic of Lonnie sneaking in the back door at Yeti:
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