On August 12, 1995, while on duty on Routine Patrol. I was a Police Officer Employed by the City of Los Angeles. I was driving a two wheeled, black and white police motorcycle, in full uniform. At approximately 1330hrs, I was Northbound on the 110 freeway, passing the Hill Street On-Ramp, when… (memory deleted).
I was in ICU at County Hospital for 4 days then transferred to Glendale Adventist Hospital. Three months later, scared to death, I re-mounted the Police Motorcycle. After about 4 hours I was right with my profession and the Motorcycle and I were one yet again.
I finished my Full Time Career on the Police Motorcycle in 2007, giving me 17 total. – I remained a Reserve Officer for 5 more years, until 2013. I finished up my tour of Duty with the LAPD as a Level 1 Reserve Officer teaching Firearms/Tactics to Recruits, reserves and in-service personnel.
Broken Ribs, Punctured Lung and Severe Head Trauma were my injuries. According to the Medical Professionals, I was unconscious for 30 minutes, and lucky to be Alive. My last memory that day was waiving to Cecil, the civilian security guard at Central LAPD facilities. Central Facilities is located at 6th and Wall. I had just left roll call at the police station to drive to North East Division.
My Next memory that day was “coming to” in the Trauma Center of County USC Hospital. I knew this room very well, because I had been there on many different occasions to watch many victims of Traffic Collisions, shootings and other violent events, expire – and survive. In fact, when I came to I looked left and observed the Trauma Staff “cracking open” the chest of a lady on the next gurney.
I was out again. My life re-started when I regained consciousness in one of the after care portals, next to the trauma center at County USC Hospital. I was staring at a Motor Sergeant that was not known for being friendly. I thought for a moment, “was I looking at the face of the afterlife and did I miss heaven…”
According to witnesses, I was driving about 65 mph when I was forced onto the curb that connects to the Hill Street on-ramp. I lost control of my Motorcycle, locked up the tires and “high-sided”, launching me from the number 3 lane (the farthest right lane) into the number 1 lane (the lane closest to the center divider). I “superman-ed” 75 feet with my head colliding with the ground(twice). Side Note – there were two points of impact discernible by the helmet on the asphalt, so hence the “twice” comment.
From the impact of my head on the asphalt, my helmet had shattered in two places (two impacts). The “city issue” helmet was later sent away so it could be analyzed and studied.
Apparently, August 12, was one of those 100+ degree days in Los Angeles. Traffic Stopped and I was not run over, “Thank GOD”. Some very kind citizens stopped and rendered what aid they could and the help call was originated. The citizens also utilized blankets to shield me from the hot asphalt.
To date, I have no more memory of the collision. Probably for good reason. My bladder voided, which is “autonomic” in nature, when your body is about to be introduced to a traumatic event. (I looked it up 🙂
This my first of 4 Traffic Collisions on the Police Motorcycle – but this one was, without a doubt, my “alive day”.
Paris and I, became licensed and started our Real Estate Business back in 1998 – She was the Full Time end of the business, I was in the background providing support.
Not much scares me any longer. I’m happy to be alive and I often relay the story to those who exhibit signs of “being scared”. Death is the great equalizer. Everyone will meet with Death at some point, that I can guarantee.