Saturday night November 2 at about 8:30pm Dan was just closing down the store and getting ready to travel the next morning. As part of the preparation for moving the Bookmobile, a block is placed in the movable pullout to stabilize it for travel. To install this block a crowbar is used to lift the heavy portion a few millimeters to put the block in place. While doing this Dan pushes down on the crowbar with all his weight and slides the block under. Somehow the crowbar slipped and Dan dropped to the ground a couple inches and landed with his foot twisted.
This broke both the Fibula and Tibia of his left foot (3 fractures). Often he does this after everyone has left the area. So, it was very fortunate that Bill and Laura-Lea Both had stayed by for a few minutes and were right there when it happened. Dan’s cell phone had been put in the tractor earlier to charge the battery so he had no way to contact anyone and it was -4 degrees out. Bill finished closing the truck and quickly got the car and Dan was taken to emergency. It soon was determined that he would have to have surgery so with the group of church members that were with him at the hospital it was decided to house him with Ron and Delphine Dame because there home has very few stairs.
By early Sunday morning Luke and Sheryl Blabey, from Hazelton, had offered to help out. By about noon they met with Dan and he turned over the truck to Luke and the Store to Sheryl and like troopers they took it to Hazelton and operated just a few hours later than scheduled. Then on Monday they went on to Burns Lake to do the sale there. While in Burns Lake it started snowing. It was the worst conditions that have been seen in several years. Luke was only able to move the truck from the hill where the church is to the road by installing chains Dan carries and more. Luke’s boss lives in Burns Lake and he was so kind to bring extra chains to make it safe to get down the worst hills in town. Other strangers helped guide Luke so he could back the truck down so it did not have to be driven down the steepest hill.
They parked for a while then finally were able to drive onto Prince George and got there about midnight. Dave Woloschuk who drove with Dan for 2 Bookmobile seasons in 2007 flew to Prince George with Karl Kuppers who knows how to operate the till. The two of them completed the Northwest/Okanagan run. Karen Toombs also was of great assistance in Prince George to get them started and to fix a problem with the Credit Card machine.
Dan had surgery on Tuesday in Kitamat to repair his ankle. A very skilled orthopedic surgeon practices in that town, by the name of Dr I van der Merwe. Dan feels he had the best of care both in emergency and surgery. During that surgery a plate with 7 screws and several pins were placed to hold the broken pieces together. Dan arrive safely home Thursday afternoon but will be completely unable to work for a number of weeks.
Unfortunately because of this accident the last bookmobile run for the Okanagan has been canceled. All those locations have seen the bookmobile at least once this season. Dan, ABC Staff and all the staff of the office thank all the many people who showed kindness and were of a great help to get us through this experience.
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