Bill Lewis is sure he would have died if a stranger hadn’t come to his aid.
“I don’t even know his name,” Lewis, an 84-year-old widower who lives in Langley, said.
Now, he wants to say thank you.
Lewis fell and fractured his right hip during a Halloween night snowfall outside his home in the Livingstone RV Park at 23141 72 Ave. in Langley, where the widower has lived for six years.
He described how he returned home in his car on Oct. 31, and got out with the walker he relies upon since both of his knee joints, and both hip joints, were replaced.
“It was snowing when I left,” Lewis told the Langley Advance Times.
“When I left, it wasn’t so bad, but coming back, there was about an inch.”
Just before he reached the entrance ramp to his front door, a wheel of the walker hit an unseen rut, and Lewis tripped and fell down, breaking his hip.
”It got stuck, and I went back, and the whole thing [walker] went over my head. It tossed me on the ground,” he described.
He couldn’t phone for help because he’d left his cell phone at home.
“I’m bad for forgetting things,” Lewis admitted.
Lewis was on the ground between two trailers, in the snow, in dark clothing on a dark evening, out of sight of most passers-by.
”I couldn’t move that much afterwards, because the pain was so bad,” Lewis said.
“I was shouting and waving, but there was only one one or two cars driving past, and they’re not looking at me, because it’s snowing.”
He remembers his teeth chattering, and his back freezing, because of the snow and moisture.
“I honestly thought I was going to die. I was just shivering and shivering and shivering.”
He estimates he was on the ground for about an hour, until a man walking past spotted Lewis and came to his aid.
“He saved me from getting too cold,” Lewis recalled.
“He went inside my trailer, took the blankets and came back out and covered me up, so I wasn’t so cold, then.”
His rescuer called 911.
Paramedics arrived, loaded Lewis into an ambulance, wrapped him in warm blankets, and took him to hospital, where he spent more than two months in rehab.
“It still hurts a little bit,” Lewis said of his injury.
“I’m not saying I’m used to it, because I’m not.”
He wishes he had thought to ask his Good Samaritan’s name.
“I was delirious, right?” he explained.
His rescuer, he recalled, did tell him that he was living just up the street from Lewis, but it appears they had moved on, and taken their trailer with them, by the time Lewis had returned to his home.
He’s hoping his rescuer will see this story, and know how grateful he is.
“I’m thankful that he found me because I was thinking, well, is this the way I’m gonna go? I didn’t know, because I was getting so cold,” Lewis related.
“It’s just possible I could have died there, because I was saying to myself if nobody comes, and I can’t move, I’m finished.”
He also wanted to make a public thank-you to the paramedics who “sort of got me in gentle” to the ambulance, as well as the hospital and rehab staff.
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