Tuesday evening, November 5, 2013, was no different from any other as Bear mounted his bike for a leisurely ride. It was something he did quite often when he was home from his job as a truck driver.
Bear's love of riding is surpassed only by his love for his 9-year old son. If you ask his brothers and sisters from the Nanih Waiya Road Warriors, they will tell you that Bear especially loved to ride at night. Whether for the solace that only the darkness can bring, or watching a full moon rise above the tree tops or perhaps gazing at the endless shimmering stars giving off a hint of light in the jet-black sky; whatever his reason, during these special times, Bear and his bike were one.
How is it possible that something which brought so much pleasure could have inflicted so much pain to such a great guy?
The fault was not Bear's. It was a chilling chain of events caused by one reckless
individual, making one bad decision, running one stop sign, slamming into one motorcycle, and in one split second changing many lives forever.
It was over in a matter of seconds. The impact was brutal and injuries severe.
Paramedics worked to quickly stablize him before he was airlifted to the nearest trauma center. Through it all, Bear remained conscious. His only concern was for his friend and passenger. He knew he had done all he could to avoid the collision.
There is no defense against a driver who decides to run a stop sign in a 3 to 5 thousand pound vehicle!
While in intensive care, minutes turned into hours and the hours into days. Surgery
after surgery was performed to remove dead tissue. After two agonizing weeks, our
hopes crumbled. Not even the prayers, tears, or doctors could save Bear's right leg
below the knee. On November 20, 2013 the amputation was done. Other operations have followed to reconstruct the severely damaged upper right leg. Over 40 percent of muscle mass had to be removed and it is still uncertain if or how much use he will have of that leg.One thing remains perfectly clear. The journey will be long, slow and grueling!
It would be so easy to let anger consume us, but that would be counterproductive. We choose to focus on the positive this holiday season and into the coming new year. Bear's strong faith in God, along with the love and support of family and friends, will give him the strength to see this through. He will turn this tragedy into triumph.
But your help is needed. Laid up in the hospital and unable to work has not stopped the bills from coming. The hospital and rehabilitation cost will be insurmountable. There is so much work ahead just to get him home and there is no way to tell how long it will be before he can resume his life. Please give to "Bear Hugs" by sending your donation to:
Make checks payable to
Citizens Bank or Paypal
P.O. Box 688