I found out at a very young age what real pain felt like when my brother hammered me in the head in an attempt to kill me. I get past that event and I go on living, only to realize my brother’s attempt was just a preamble to what would lie ahead.
Traveling down a street as I am older now, I get hit by a drunk driver and thrown right out of my car. My car spins and turns and eventually runs over the top of me, breaking my back in two places and causing massive head trauma. I survive, though my doctors never give me a chance.
My recovery is relatively swift and I find my self during my flying years flying a friend and his family to a little town in Michigan. As I release the landing gear and we’re about to touch down, my friend decides he wants to help and mistakenly pulls the landing gear back up. The plane skids out of control and eventually I manage to bring it to a complete halt without anyone on board suffering any serious injury.
It takes me an entire year to fix my plane, a year in which I start riding my Harley again. Unfortunately, as I am doing 50 mph down a highway, a truck suddenly stops dead in front of me. With not enough time to stop before hitting the truck, I jump off the bike – which ends up totaled under the truck – and I fly some 15 feet into the air, before landing and sliding to a complete halt. To everyone’s amazement, I immediately stand up and I walk to the crash site with nothing more then then a sore hand to show for my near death experience.
Next, deciding to visit my parents, I embark in my plane and fly to Michigan, only to be caught in a raising cloud deck. The controller lets me know about the cold weather and advises me to return, but as the message ends, my plane starts to malfunction due to icing conditions.
As the clouds rise, I see myself approaching the mountain at a deadly speed – this is it! However, I manage to barely tilt the plane and miss the mountain, followed by a less then comfortable landing in Gallup, New Mexico. One more stare down the barrel of a gun.
Three years of almost constant heart attacks follow, as I undergo 13 heart surgeries and have 9 stints installed, and my heart is totally taken out of my chest for a quadruple bypass.
Barley recovered from my heart attack period, I decide to get away and do some swimming in the Colorado River, and swim from an island only to make it to the other side exhausted and with terrible chest pain. Still alive, but no less misfortunate, my back goes out crippling me for 8 months. My doctors propose surgery, but stubborn and also paranoid – I refuse. I fight the pain while tied to my bed, as my ex-wife decides to hire a lawyer and sues me for more money.
My back recovers and I can finally walk again, and also work to pay my ex-wife, but the real estate market crashes, leaving me broke. As if that isn’t bad enough, in another silly accident, my back goes out again, this time almost paralyzing me for good.
Thoughts of suicide run through my mind as I pick up my gun, but then realize how foolish that would be and put it back down. Eventually I heal – again – and am able to go on living my life.
However, soon enough I find myself in the most terrible accident I have ever been in; doing 70 mph down the highway, a van (driven by a mom and full of kids) stops dead in front of me. I manage to turn left and stare death in the face in the form of the oncoming cars, but miraculously I make it; driving off the shoulder and then off the road. The car spins and turns but eventually comes to a complete halt. I suffer little damage apart from an almost instant heart attack.
Today, although I am a little roughed up I carry on with my life, my ex-wife still suing me, my ex-girlfriend still stalking me. I have trouble sleeping and I am always looking over my shoulder, but I know, after so many experiences, that whatever life might throw at me, there’s nothing I can’t take. Nothing.
by John C Hoenicke