Watch above: What was supposed to be a memorable trip has turned into something a Stony Plain couple would rather forget. The pair was headed to B.C. on their motorcycles, but things quickly took a devastating turn. Shallima Maharaj reports. WARNING: some of the images in this story are graphic.
EDMONTON – A Stony Plain man, who may lose one of his eyes, is stressing the importance of safety gear after being hit in the face with an object while riding his motorcycle early last week.
Wesley Henkel and his wife, Marci Henkel, left Alberta on Monday for a two-day bike trip to B.C. They had just crossed over the border when Wesley was hit in the face with what he believes was a glass bottle.
“I may never prove it,” he said Sunday, “but I do truly believe that I was hit with something thrown out of a vehicle.”
Marci, who was riding directly behind her husband at the time, says she heard a smash and what appeared to be glass come flying at Wesley’s head.
“After I heard the (smash) of the bottle I’m pretty sure I heard, “Raaaw’ or ‘Yaaa,’ like a scream of, ‘Yeah we did it’,” Marci explained.
The pair pulled over their bikes and after getting their bearings realized how badly Wesley’s eye was damaged.
“My eye ball was sliced this way (horizontally), right in half, right in the back and crushed,” said Wesley.
“I can’t get it out of my mind. It was the most horrible thing I’ve ever seen,” added Marci, holding back tears.
The couple doesn’t know exactly what struck Wesley, but he says glass shards had to be pulled out of his arm and chest.
Wesley was taken to hospital where he underwent surgery to stitch the eye back together, but he says his vision in his left eye is completely gone. He is scheduled for another surgery on Monday, in hopes of regaining at least some of his vision.
“I’m hoping for the best,” Wesley said. “I’ve already been told the vision probably will not ever return.”
Now, as he prepares for what may be life-changing surgery, Wesley wants to stress the importance of wearing full safety gear when riding.
“That day I packed the bike with all my saddle bags with my safety glasses and everything, and then I went and put on ordinary sunglasses,” he recalled.
“I don’t know what would have happened, but I know I would probably have been in a lot better shape if I would have been wearing something shatterproof.”
With files from Shallima Maharaj, Global News.
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