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Wife Trusts Her Gut And Insists On Medical Intervention That Saves Husband's Life
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Everyday Heroes

Wife Trusts Her Gut And Insists On Medical Intervention That Saves Husband's Life

Sometimes there are moments where everything can change, like when Michael Hooky Walker decided to go out for a quick motorcycle ride – and almost never came back.


A shocking accident

Walker had taken his Harley Davidson out for a 20-minute ride before a family dinner, and then he remembered nothing until he woke up a month later. He had been in a coma and had more than 50 fractures in his body.

What started as swerving to avoid lambs that were partially blocking the road ended with him being near death at a crash site.

“He did not look in a good way. If I hadn't heard him breathing, I [would have] thought he was already gone ... I didn't think there was any hope,”

- Jo Walker

Jo Walker, his wife, insisted a Westpac Rescue helicopter be called as because she didn’t think her husband would survive the 90-minute ambulance ride to Christchurch Hospital.

Awakening from a coma

“If Jo hadn't actually insisted on one of our friends calling the air ambulance then I wouldn't be here. They saved my life,” Hooky Walker said.

His injuries included brain bleeds, a shattered femur, broken shoulder, about 10 fractures in his back, broken ribs and a collapsed lung.

While in a month-long coma, Walker had a series of surgeries. He also twice suffered from sepsis infections.

“They (doctors) told Jo to go get family because they didn't expect me to make it. Every few days I was living hour to hour,” he said.

But Walker survived, and woke from the coma, and he instantly saw his father and sister, who had traveled from Ireland.

“When I saw my father he just teared up. I couldn’t talk, but I gave him the old universal eyebrow [raise] and then he started crying again.”

-Michael Hooky Walker

He also revealed the dreams he had had while in a coma. “They were absolutely horrific. I constantly felt like I was running away from people who wanted to have a piece of me.”

Walker was released just before Christmas and is now just trying to reclaim his life.

A new normal

“Now it's about trying to understand what normal looks like and adjusting my life to that.”

That means taking things one day at a time as he regains his strength.

“I've been kicked off the horse, so I have to get back on it. It's not in my nature to fold, but I'm really sensitive to what Jo would think if I rode out the gate again.

He's already come a long way and survived incredible odds. “There's no talk of taking a backwards step, it's all moving forward.”

Strength is a marathon, not a sprint

Many of us can relate to Walker on a smaller scale. We all face adversity and it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

This story is also a reminder that life is unpredictable, but that sometimes, things turn out well in the most miraculous ways -- and through the help of loved ones.

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