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BHS cross-country runner Jake Urban recovering from traffic accident

Jake Urban is among the senior leaders of the Bemidji boys cross-country running team but his contributions have been temporarily put on hold while he recovers from injuries suffered in a two-vehicle accident which occurred about 7:45 a.m. Thursday.

Urban was heading north on Hubbard County Road 98. Approaching from the west on County Road 2 (North Plantagenet Road) was a semi tractor-trailer driven by Michael Nepean, 61, of Bagley.

"I was at a two-way stop on the detour road and most of the vehicles on that road are there because of the detour," Urban said. "I saw the truck and I expected it to slow down and turn left. But he didn't turn and he T-boned me.

"I saw the semi at the last second and the next thing I knew I woke up and the car was upside down in the ditch," Urban said. "And I was hanging upside down in my seat belt."

Nepean was uninjured while Urban wasn't sure how seriously he was hurt.

"When I was hanging from the seatbelt and bleeding with my head injury all I heard were muffled noises," Urban said. "It was like a bad dream that you wanted to wake up from."

Urban, who was the lone occupant, later learned that he had escaped with only a concussion, scratches, bumps and bruises. Had there been a passenger, however, the consequences would have been much more severe.

"The semi hit my passenger side in the middle of the car," Urban said. "And the door on the passenger side ended up by the driver's-side door."

Urban was taken to North Country Regional Hospital and was released about five hours later.

"They did CT scans and x-rays to make sure everything was okay with my spine and my head," Urban said. "Today (Friday) my chest is sore because of the pressure of the seatbelt but I'm doing well."

Urban will miss Friday's home cross-country meet at Greenwood Golf Course but he doesn't expect to be relegated to spectator status very long.

"I might be able to do some bike work next week and I should be ready to compete at Little Falls (Sept. 16)," he said.

"I'll be back but while I'm gone I would like to see my teammates run hard and do everything they can to keep from missing me," Urban said.

Urban admits that he is a newly inducted member of the "lucky to be alive" fraternity and he plans to take full advantage of his membership.

"Going through something like this gives you a new viewpoint on life," he said. "It teaches you to cherish every day.

"I also learned that I need to be more careful when I'm driving," Urban added.

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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