Monday, January 24, 2011

Article from BC Paper The Heights (November 7, 1994)

I was a junior in college and heading back to my apartment after class. I was glad when the BC shuttle bus stopped at the intersection right across from my apartment. Even though it wasn’t an official stop, none of us students complained to the driver. The bus was stopped at an intersection, and I assumed the light was red. It wasn’t…

When I stepped out into the street, I saw a truck (like a Ford Bronco) less than ten feet away from me. I only had time enough to think “I’m going to get hit”, and then I got hit. I remember the impact and being on the ground. I don’t remember flying through the air – a guy I knew who was a friend of a friend was across the street and saw it happen (He said I flew about 5 feet in the air about 15-20 yards).

When I was on the ambulance, the EMTs were asking me all the standard questions – what is your name, what day is it, etc. I knew what was going on, but when they asked me “Who is the president?”, for some reason I thought I would have fun with them. I knew it was Clinton, but looked at them and said, “Um, JFK, right?” They looked a little shocked, but I laughed and told them the right answer.

When I got to the hospital I tried calling my family to let them know what happened, but the ER phone only allowed you to make local 617 calls. So, I called my roommate Kevin and the conversation went something like this:

Me: Hey Kev, it’s Dave.

Kevin: Hey.

Dave: Hey, I got hit by a truck and I’m in the ER.

Kevin: Very funny.

Dave: No, I’m serious.

Kevin: Ha, ha.

And this continued until I said, “I really need you to call my mom and tell her I’m okay…”

When he finally believed me I asked him if he saw all the fire trucks and ambulances outside of our apartment. “Oh, that was you????”, he replied.

I was only in the hospital one night, and my Uncle told me “We know you have 9 lives Dave, but you need to slow down…” I returned to BC with a sling , a prescription to pain medicine, and a story I would be telling for the rest of my life. When I got out of the bus to go to class the next day, my friend of a friend looked at me like he was looking at a ghost. I said hi to him, and he just stood there with his mouth open. I laughed and asked him what was up. He said, “I saw you get hit yesterday…I thought you were dead!” I casually replied, “Nope, just a broken clavicle. I’m fine.” He got on the bus and was still shaking his head in disbelief.

One more interesting thing happened when I got hit. My friend Andy, who was thousands of miles away studying abroad in Australia, felt the impact. He had a feeling something had happened to someone in his family, and called home to make sure everything was okay. Even after his mom had assured him everything was all right and his Australian friends wanted to head out to a bar, Andy decided to stay in because he still had a bad feeling. I sent Andy a letter a couple of weeks later with a crude drawing of me getting hit on the outside of the envelope. I also included the date it happened, and suddenly Andy’s feelings of dread made sense.

Even though this was the only time I was featured in a Heights article, I did receive anonymous ink a few times in the police blotter. And for the record, I was misquoted about “the bus driver being in a tough spot” and “he shouldn’t have stopped there”. But I stand by my quote: “If anyone should be charged with anything, I should be charged with being stupid.” Someone or something was definitely looking out for me, that’s for sure.


  1. It makes me really happy that you're one of the (seems to be so few) people who take ownership for their own mistakes. Put almost anyone else in your place and they'd be a millionaire after all the lawsuits.