GRATITUDE: Injured bicyclist says, ‘Thanks to the woman who called 911 for me’

From James:

I wiped out on my bike today, barrelling down Genesee between Avalon Way & Delridge. A bike malfunction locked up my back wheel and I was thrown. The injuries were semi-serious, but I was trying to crawl my way back to my bike and get home. I’m glad I didn’t. She calmed me down, insisted that I sit, called 911 and (I think) waited until the fire brigade arrived. The ambulance picked me up and I just got home from Harborview. Staples in my head, cracked helmet, and about 2 sq ft of aggregate road rash.

Thanks to that nice woman who stopped and called the cops for me. I likely otherwise would have pretended everything was cool, but at the time I was likely concussed and in a haze. Now that I have my wits back, I could easily see myself walking back up the hill and trying to ride home when I had a hard time remembering what year it was in the ambulance. I also had a hard time remembering who the president is, which is a nice side effect of concussions if you’re into that sort of thing.

Again, thanks to that kind woman. Seattle is becoming a gritty city in some parts, but I’m happy to have nice neighbors in West Seattle.

25 Replies to "GRATITUDE: Injured bicyclist says, 'Thanks to the woman who called 911 for me'"

  • AJP August 29, 2017 (9:07 pm)

    Glad you’re doing ok! And glad that kind neighbor stopped for you. 

  • Alki Resident August 29, 2017 (9:22 pm)

    I’m glad you’re ok. Thank goodness for that helmet though. I hope you can enjoy the next few days not remembering who the president is unlike the rest of us.

  • justme August 29, 2017 (9:39 pm)

    Great story and glad you’re okay! Thanks for the laugh at the end. You still have your wits. ;-)

  • Carole August 29, 2017 (9:48 pm)

    Glad you are going to be ok and so glad you were wearing a helmet. A relative had a serious bike accident a few months ago and his helmet, which split in two, likely saved his life.

  • George T. August 29, 2017 (10:00 pm)

    I commute by bike and have a tag with emergency contacts and medical info. Helpful for the first responders, too. Kudos to that Good Samaritan.  

  • Suzanne Krom August 29, 2017 (10:21 pm)

    I’m so glad you are okay. You were so fortunate that that particular woman was there for you today, and took the time to make sure you got the care you needed. 

    I’ll always be grateful to the homeless man who helped me after I was hit by a guy turning left on a yellow light in downtown Denver. It was the early-1970s, and this man was the only person who stepped forward to help me as I laid in the middle of a major intersection unable to move, my bike a tangled mess next to me, while hundreds of onlookers watched from the sidelines (almost like they were watching tv). He carried me to safety and then retrieved my wreck of a bike. He then removed his jacket to create a pillow for my head, and then ripped his shirt to try to stop the bleeding (it was winter, so cold, and those were the only clothes he had). He called out for others to get an ambulance to me, which they did but only after he asked them to.  I’ll never forget him. He was my angel that day — and the woman who helped you today is yours. 

    Heal well and may you always stay safe. You were very fortunate today, thankfully. 

  • Kiran August 29, 2017 (10:29 pm)

    Thanks for sharing the gratitude and warm feels. So happy you are ok, well done helmet!!! (Hope the presidential amnesia continues)

  • Paul August 29, 2017 (10:44 pm)

    Parents have your kids read this.  I see way too many kids on bikes in traffic without helmets.

    You are a lucky man and it goes to show that we do have caring humans about us.

    • sbre August 30, 2017 (5:02 am)

      True Paul…and to add; Quite often I see parents riding with their kids, the kids are wearing helmets while the parent(s) are not.  Who would look after the kid(s) if the parent had an accident which left them unconscious?

      Kids, make your parents wear a helmet!!

  • mark47n August 30, 2017 (5:05 am)

    I’m glad you’re OK.

    I had a helmet breaking crash a few years ago, do to horseplay, while out riding with my wife and daughters. I went down on Hudson and 50th at about 20mph, I just jerked my bars around, I don’t even know how that happened. I also recall laying in the middle of the intersection and on one corner a woman just standing there watching as my wife runs to me. On the other corner was a man who immediately rushed to help. I’ll never forget that juxtaposition.

    My daughter asked, as I limped home, if I could do it again so she could film it.

  • sbre August 30, 2017 (5:07 am)

    James, Like everyone else, I too am glad your harrowing tale has a good ending, and that your guardian-angel was around when you needed her.

    And a thank-you to that woman who was wearing a halo yesterday.

    Save your helmet and use it as a training tool when speaking about this in the future, I did it with mine and its amazing the effect that a mangled piece of foam & plastic has on people.

    Hoping you’re back on 2 wheels soon!!! 

  • Holli August 30, 2017 (7:10 am)

    Thank you for sharing your story, and I wish you a speedy recovery! Many thanks to the good Samaritan – you’ve set a wonderful example and remind us all to stop and help.

  • Just Wondering August 30, 2017 (8:20 am)

    I read somewhere once that the companies that make bike helmets will exchange your helmet for a new one.  They use the old one to show the importance of using bike helmets.

  • Jort Sandwich August 30, 2017 (9:14 am)

    I’m glad to hear that James is doing OK.

    I should note that the opponents of the protected bike lane on Avalon — (cough, Luna Park Cafe, cough cough) — have suggested that the protected bike facilities instead be routed east, down Genesee, instead. 

    The steepness of that hill, both going down and up, should automatically disqualify that routing from consideration for completing our city’s cycling master plan. Avalon is an ideal grade for cyclists, and the protected bike facility should be placed there, in large part to prevent incidents like the one James just experienced, but also to provide for a family-friendly, safe cycling network. 

    • WSB August 30, 2017 (9:53 am)

      The alternative suggestion discussed at a few meetings was for Yancy, not Genesee, and it was noted that many riders already use Yancy as a cut-through. We’ve reported that multiple times.

      West Seattle Bike Connections, however, has since gone officially on record as supporting the bicycle facilities on Avalon as currently proposed.

      Yancy’s grade is much more gradual than Genesee, FWIW. Although bicycle lanes are not unheard of on steep hills – there’s one on California SW in Gatewood, for example, and there’s been one on the drawing board for the SW Morgan hill between Morgan Junction and High Point. Sorry I don’t have the exact grade #’s.

  • they August 30, 2017 (9:42 am)

    So glad to hear your ok and thank you to the good Samaritan. Does any body know how the City of Seattle is going to insure the helmet law is enforced. As we all can see from the posts here that to turn a blind eye could have long term consequences, send terrible messages to our youth about safety and put a huge strain on our legal system once people start claiming the City as well as everybody else knew putting hundreds of new riders on the streets many new to cycling in traffic with out the required PPE would result in in incidents/head injury’s.        

  • datamuse August 30, 2017 (10:01 am)

    I’ve wiped out twice in my life and both times someone came to help (in one instance driving me to the hospital). Like Mr. Rogers said, look for the helpers…

  • Just Wondering August 30, 2017 (10:03 am)

    I also question all the new green and yellow bikes around West Seattle you can use with an app.

    What about helmets when using them? 

    • ECamel August 30, 2017 (1:33 pm)

      Bring your own or risk your head (or an unlikely $30 ticket). 

  • Al August 30, 2017 (10:26 am)

    I’m glad your ok. I’ve had bad accidents myself.  Its nice that lady helped you out.

    I’ve never had a great side effect like that,  Your lucky!

  • Jort August 30, 2017 (6:31 pm)

    How is it, I wonder, that the cities that have the highest cycling rates also have the lowest head injury rates — all while having some of the lowest helmet usage rates?

    A lot of people would be shocked if they saw how few people had helmets in Amsterdam or Copenhagen.

    • Phillies Hat Guy Again August 30, 2017 (11:06 pm)

      I think it has a lot to do with flatness and separated bike lanes. Flatness, obviously brings people out who can ride and not get sweaty. That same quality prevents people from losing control or falling prey to equipment failure. Protected bike lanes separate people from cars and there aren’t nearly as many accidents. My theory.

  • Amy Poremba August 30, 2017 (6:50 pm)

    I am glad you are ok and for that woman that stopped to help. I am also dying about your concussions remark and the President 🤣

  • Dan August 30, 2017 (7:31 pm)

    Very lucky  and glad good people are out there.

    Like i tell my kids, always wear a helmet and make sure your lights are on. Back and front. See to many bikers late at night without lights. So dangerous.

  • ScubaFrog August 30, 2017 (9:36 pm)

    I love our community.  Every day I’m out and about, and meet more people in our community, I come to love it more (even our fellow trumpanzees).

    This really is a unique place to live.  I’m grateful for it.

Sorry, comment time is over.