Corey Weston lost his leg on March 14 in a tragic accident while digging fence post holes on his land in St. Clair County. On June 28, he finally got to thank the deputy who applied the tourniquet and helped get him airlifted to the hospital.
Weston said he was building a pasture fence because he was thinking about getting some cows or a horse.
On the morning of March 14, he drove his child to school, then came home to set some posts. Weston said his wife brought him breakfast and helped him with the posts after eating.
Weston was using an auger, a rotating metal rod, usually equipped with a helical screw blade used to drill holes in the soil. He said they’d made four holes and started on the fifth when the auger got stuck on a rock.
Weston got off his tractor to adjust the auger, and the wind blew his shirt into the bar that connects the tool to the tractor and wrapped him up, eventually grabbing his jeans.
Weston was rendered unconscious. He said that is all he remembers about the incident, but he said his wife was able to apply a small tourniquet on the end of his leg and call neighbors for help, as well as 911. When a neighbor arrived, she also applied her belt to the wound.
The St. Clair County Sheriff’s Office received a call about a traumatic injury and deputies responded. Deputy Gordon Williams placed the final tourniquet and helped get Weston on the helicopter to fly to UAB Hospital, where he would recover.
“Honestly, [the recovery has] been great,” Weston said. “The doctors are impressed. They say they’ve never seen anybody recover like this.”
Weston said Williams called several times while in the hospital to check up on him and stopped at his father’s produce stand to ask about him.
Weston lost his right leg from about two inches above his knee. He said the biggest challenge has been not being able to do what he used to be able to do and having to ask other people for help. He tries to do everything possible on his own.
Currently, Weston uses crutches, though he has a doctor’s appointment soon to complete the molding for a prosthetic.
“It’s all healed, and they're ready to put it back together,” Weston said.
After he left the hospital, Weston looked for Williams. He said he kept an eye out for St. Clair County Sheriff’s Office cars.
“I never could find him,” Weston said.
He finally ran into Williams coincidentally at a benefit raffle at a local gun shop. Weston thanked Williams on his way out. Weston said Williams didn’t recognize him at first but eventually figured it out.
“The way he reacted and checked on me, it was just real touching,” Weston said. “You don’t see many folks like that anymore."
“There are so many people involved,” Williams said. “I played a very small part of a large piece.”
Williams is a retired combat soldier with the National Guard. He has trained as a combat lifesaver.
“I’m grateful to still be here,” Weston said. “…It’s bad, but it could have been worse.”
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