Monday morning on my way to work I woke up behind the steering wheel of my car, people are reaching into my car, telling me that everything was going to be okay, that I've been involved in a major vehicular accident and that they were about to cut the roof of my car off in order to get me out ... then someone threw a heavy white cloth over my head and I heard the jaws of life start to cut apart the metal roof of my car.
Someone in a Chevy Colorado pickup had hit me from behind at full speed while I was stopped at the redlight at the intersection at the Sam's Club on Highway 98.
I don't know how I survived and l was unconscious until the rescue personnel could get there and get me out of the car. I'm currently at Forrest General Hospital but should be released in the next couple days. I had a laceration to my neck that took 20 stitches to close and another laceration to my left cheek. I told the trauma team not to worry about being neat because they couldn't make me any uglier ... even after an impact like that and going through all that I did I still had my dark sense of humor.
Multiple bruises, friction burns, mesentery bruising of my lower intestine, three fractured ribs and a fractured T4 vertebrae. I was wearing my seatbelt. I wouldn't be here if I hadn't been. Today's the first day I've been able to actually get out of bed and move around some though with a great deal of difficulty and pain. It could have been a lot worse and I really don't know how I survived ... short of the grace of God.
I'll miss the Daytona.
Just when I got all the kinks worked out of it someone totals it for me. I think I owned the Daytona a sum total of 5 months and everyone who has followed this blog knows how much effort and time I put into that little Dodge. Life just isn't fair but the Daytona did her duty and sacrificed herself to protect me and I can't even imagine the forces or physics involved in the impact.
CT scans are good and neuro and trauma are going to sign off on me soon so other than being really sore for a few months I'll be okay.
God is great and powerful!
Sadly, this is the end of the Daytona Diary. What was to become a living blog about the restoration and ownership of a very rare 1980's Dodge sports car has come to a tragic end albeit one with a silver lining; I'm still alive. It was a great little car that gave me a lot of fun and pleasure to drive and I really enjoyed working on it. Like all of the cars that I've owned this one was an adventure albeit a short adventure. The little red Shelby turned heads everywhere I drove it and I was just a few steps away from repainting it and restriping it back to factory original condition.
So ... I'm short a daily driver and I'll be looking for something to replace the Daytona, maybe even another Daytona but a Shelby like the one I had is a once in a lifetime find. I'd have to be pretty lucky to find another '89 Shelby with T-tops and I think I've used up a good portion of my luck in the last few days.
Be careful out there.
That's looking from the back to the front of the car, that's the rear bumper and tag shoved all the way into the rear seat.
From the rear bumper forward the only part of the Daytona that was not crushed was the space immediately around the driver's seat (me), the dash and everything else forward of the windshield. Rescue personnel basically just cut what was left of the roof of the Daytona off and pushed it off the Dodge before extracting me.
It almost looks like a Smart Car here ... The entire rear suspension is twisted the wrong way and the spare tire is now part of the back seat.
Twenty stitches in my neck. Just a little bit difference in location and ... yeah.
The Daytona as she sat on Thursday when I was released from the hospital. My wife drove me over to look at the Dodge and take pictures because up until that point I'd only seen the pictures that she had taken on her phone. Seeing it in person, what was left of it, was a really eye opening experience. The impact energies must have been almost unimaginable.
There's the driver's seat. I'm guessing that they cleaned everything up at the scene of the wreck and just shoveled it in but that's where the EMTs and rescue personnel cut me out of. Everything else was crushed. If my wife and two daughters had been with me in the car they would have been killed instantly by the impact.
Again, looking back to front. What a waste of a rare car ...
There's where they cut the roof off and another view of the driver's seat where they cut me out of my womb of twisted metal and plastic.
Me in my sweats ... the only thing that felt comfortable enough to wear out of the hospital. That's just a size shot showing you how compressed the Daytona had become in the wreck. Imagine me sitting in the driver's seat, belted in, and having to be cut out of that wreck.
Another shot of the damage. The interior basically folded in all around me.