A hunter is in a medically induced coma after hanging upside down for two days after a fall from a tree stand. Eddie Voelker age 70 of Oregon became tangled in his harness and flipped over. He hung that way until another hunter stumbled upon him and was able to alert rescuers.
The Union County Sherrif’s Department shared the following account in a Facebook post.
At approximately 11:15 today a hunter came across a man who had fallen from his tree stand and was tangled in the safety harness, hanging upside down. The victim was over 20’ in the air and was still conscious. He told the hunter he had been hanging there for two days.
The incident had occurred north of Highway 244 northwest of the Frazier/Four Corners area. The hunter had to drive to the highway to get cell phone reception, at which point he called 911. The call was automatically routed to the Union County Dispatch Center in La Grande.
Medical units were dispatched from La Grande, and after dispatchers consulted with their Umatilla counterparts, Union County Search & Rescue units were also activated. The latter were trained and equipped for high angle/rope rescue.
The subject was located, and the technical rescue commenced, assisted by Pendleton ambulance, Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office, USFS, and OTEC personnel. Midway through the rescue the subject lost consciousness and his heart quit beating. He was quickly lowered to the ground with the assistance of the OTEC boom-truck bucket, and taken by La Grande Fire Department personnel and ambulance to a make-shift landing zone where the Life Flight helicopter was waiting. The subject was taken by air ambulance to a regional hospital
PRESS RELEASE August 28th (Tuesday) 2018 1635 hours For immediate…
Fox News has since reported on the incident and it does not look good.
A Voelker’s family friend, Jeanette Jacoby, told the East Oregonian he was put in a drug-induced coma Wednesday after doctors performed a procedure to relieve pressure on his brain. While Voelker was breathing on his own for a while, he had to be placed back on a ventilator Thursday.
Let us pray for a speedy recovery and remember to always let someone know where you are hunting and what time you plan on being back.