DIVIDE, Colo. (KKTV) - From a bike ride, to a ride on the back of a stretcher. A biker who narrowly survived being impaled by a tree got the chance to meet the first responders who saved his life.
Photo courtesy: UC Health
"I basically thought i was done," Eddie Kerr explained. "I said a small prayer, said goodbye to my family and loved ones."
Kerr remembers riding his bike near Divide, then he hit a tree branch.
"Ended up t-boning a tree pretty good," Kerr recalled. "There was a branch sticking out... the branch actually kind of deflected off my chest protector and my neck brace, into my shoulder-throat area and just impaled me."
One of his friends noticed he was missing from the group and went back to find him severely injured.
"Basically i just laid down and came to peace with what was going to happen," said Kerr.
"There were a lot of challenges surrounding just finding him," said Matthew Bergland, a flight paramedic with UCHealth Lifeline.
Bergland was one of the paramedics who rescued Kerr by helicopter.
He took cell phone video of the incident.
"If we weren't able to get to him for whatever reason, the odds of him surviving would have been very low," Bergland added.
Kerr was flown to Memorial Hospital.
Kerr said he had two broken ribs, broken vertebrae, a broken scapula and a punctured lung. His protective vest and helmet helped save his life, and so did the responders and doctors. Four surgeries later, Kerr doesn't plan on riding his bike anytime soon, but he wants others to wear safety gear.
"You never know. You don't. You just never know," Kerr said.