Two St. Louis police officers, one a field training officer and the other a trainee, have shared their story of survival after being struck by a vehicle on the interstate earlier this year.
“All you see is a vehicle coming straight at you. The last thing going through my head was, ‘I’m dead,'” Field Training Officer Brian Hayes, 45, told FOX2now.
Hayes and Officer Delvion Mitchell, a trainee, were hit by a vehicle on Interstate 64 while assisting a disabled vehicle.
Hayes is recovering from a concussion, bone bruises throughout his knees and arms, nerve damage, and a torn hamstring.
Mitchell, 23, was more severely injured.
“My right leg was broken,” Mitchell said. “My right hip was fractured. My left foot was fractured. My face was fractured. My right eye was kind of fractured. My skull was fractured. I had lacerations on my hands and wrists.”
Although the two officers will not return to work for some time, they share a special bond and are closer as a result of the incident.
“Every day I call him. He’s more than a partner, more than a trainee. He’s a brother to me now,” Hayes said. “We share a day together that no one else is going to share with us. Jan. 24, around 6:30 p.m., is basically our alive day. It could have ended for either of us.”
When Mitchell was discharged from rehabilitation, Hayes was there to greet him and said there was no question he’d be there to see his friend, brother, and colleague.