The ski patrolman
Monday March 24th 2008, 2:09 pm
Filed under: Friends,Life

I talked to Nicholas’s mom at church. She filled me in on the rest of the story.

Nicholas got the rod taken out of his leg in January, got a follow-up later, and got the okay to go–okay, picture me starting to look wide-eyed at her, thinking, you didn’t! You are FAR braver souls than I!–skiing again.

I am *so* not a skiier. Never mind. On with the story. Jim emailed me so that I could have it in his words.

“I had contacted BT, the ski patrol/medic who had helped Nicholas at the scene of the accident. He was working that day, and we met him at the lift after we got our ski equipment. Now, I don’t imagine too many people come back and look up ski patrolmen. And yes, he was just doing his job, but we choose to believe that it was not entirely coincidental that he was very close by when Nicholas fell and was at his side almost immediately. He skied with us for about an hour, and it was fun getting to know him. He’s not your average ski bum: he has just been accepted to Stanford Medical School (among others)!

We went to tower #10 and took some pictures of where Nicholas had fallen. We have always said that it was a 30′ drop, but it’s actually a little higher than that, maybe 35′? Yikes! We loved riding the high-speed chairlift. BT showed us a few runs we hadn’t tried before, and then had to take off for work at a Reno hospital. We hope he ends up at Stanford.”

Boy, I do too. If ever/the next time that/ I’m a patient at Stanford, I’m hoping he’ll be one of the students that stops by so I can thank him too.

Imagine seeing that eight-year-old child falling off that ski lift. Imagine tending to him, knowing his parents are stuck on that lift and there’s nothing they can do but give their child up into your hands for the moment. Imagine seeing them flying down the slopes as soon as they can, with the boy’s little brother. Imagine radioing for an airlift helicopter, seeing Nicholas lying there, badly hurt but conscious and able to answer you.

Imagine, a year later, those parents bringing their son, alive, whole, with no brain damage, back, a three hour drive each way, to show you the outcome of the care you gave that day.

Imagine having that to look back on, later in your life, should burnout ever threaten your outlook on your giving care to others.

9 Comments so far
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I can’t imagine.

Comment by Amanda 03.24.08 @ 2:27 pm

Fortunately I dont have the experiance of having my child hurt, and I dont want to imagine having to Thank Someone for saving his life! Life is to short to imagine stuff like that.
Have A Nice Day!!

Comment by Danielle from SW MO 03.24.08 @ 3:03 pm

I can imagine. It is inspirational. I have the happy meal toy that my first reading student ever gave me. Still makes me smile, even on the bad days!

Comment by Gigi 03.24.08 @ 5:26 pm

I can’t believe it’s been a year already! wow.
I read your question on knittalk, and I believe (as a former avid skier) that the neck gaiter thing would be the way to go. Scarves can get tangled in ski lifts…not good.
Or else.. could you make him an apres-ski lap robe to snuggle up in…:)?

Comment by Karin 03.24.08 @ 7:32 pm

I can assure you that emergency service folks delight in hearing/seeing the positive outcomes. I’m so glad this story had such a happy ending!

Comment by Channon 03.25.08 @ 6:15 am

I know they say you have to get back on the horse that throws you but I don’t think I am that strong!!!

Comment by grace 03.25.08 @ 12:24 pm

Lovely story! And kudos to Nicholas’ parents…it must have been very tempting to keep him safe at home, but instead they let him fly.

(I do downhill ski, and there’s nothing else quite like it- the brilliance of sun on snow, the cold fresh air in your face, the lightness of skimming down a slope with only the angle of your edges to guide your path. Fantastic.)

Comment by RobinH 03.25.08 @ 1:17 pm

so cool. I love hearing things like that, though as a parent, that scares the you-know-what out of me.

Comment by Sandra 03.25.08 @ 2:59 pm

I’m sure that this incident will stick in his mind forever. I believe that you’re right about it reminding him why he’s doing what he’s doing someday in the future. I know it would for me.

Comment by Tracy J 03.26.08 @ 10:40 pm

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