The Crash

April 9, 2008
By Tyler Easterling, Mexia, TX

Have you ever made a mistake that could change your life forever? Something that you wish you could go back in time to re-do? On September 4th, 2003, I made one of these choices.

It started out as a normal summer day. I had two friends over and we were laughing and having a good time. We were trying to think of something to do, and one of my friends suggested that we go ride ATV’s in the pasture. We all agreed that this would be fun and would entertain us for a while. We grabbed our helmets and headed out to the shed where the ATV’s were parked. My two friends hopped on one, I hopped on the other, and we were off! We rode for hours and were having fun all day long. Finally, towards the end of the day, I decided to be a showoff to my friends. I bet them I could jump a hill farther than they could. My friends were never ones to back down from a challenge, so they hastily accepted. They went first and jumped about 20 feet each. Then it was my turn… I was determined to beat them. I went about 100 yards back, and then took off towards the hill. I got the ATV to full speed, then as soon as I hit the hill, I yanked up on the handle-bars in order to get maximum lift-off. My hands slipped from the handle-bars, my feet came off the foot stands, and there I was… lying in the hospital bed with a broken ankle and no flesh left on the back of my right leg.

When I left the hospital the next day, I decided to look at the helmet I was wearing during the crash. The entire back of the helmet was broken open, and the face-mask was shattered into thousands of pieces. I realized that if I had not been wearing that helmet, I probably would not be alive today.
Ever since the accident, I never felt quite as comfortable on an ATV… I always wear my helmet, but I am always scared that I might make another stupid mistake and have another crash. Luckily, it seems as though God is on my side, and I hope it will stay that way… crash free.

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