GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Erik Rickman vividly recalls the night of April 19, 2013. He was riding his motorcycle to South Mississippi to visit his girlfriend when something completely unexpected happened. He says it was a night that changed his life.
"I was coming down here from Jackson, probably around 9:30 at night. I was coming down 49 on to 90 and I was coming around a little curve. There was a truck sitting in the crossover turn around. I was only doing about 40 miles per hour. When I got maybe 10 or 15 feet of them they just pulled across the road, as if maybe they never saw me in the first place," Rickman said.
"I was just laying there kind of panicking. I thought I had lost my legs. A lady stopped and starting talking with me. Asking me what my name was and she had told me she called 911 and that they would be there soon," Rickman said. "I don't know who she is. I just know that she saved my life, man."
When asked if there was anything she could do for him, Rickman simply asked her to call his girlfriend. From his phone, she did just that and talked with her until paramedics arrived.
"Paramedics said that the lady gave him my phone. One of the police officers came in the ambulance and gave me a breathalyzer, but no one said anything about this woman. I searched the police report and she's not even listed as a witness or anything," Rickman said.
Though the bike looks relatively okay, the injuries of the rider tell a different story. He broke both legs, both wrists and his pelvis. He was in such bad shape that Rickman said he doesn't remember what direction the woman came from, or what she even looked like. What he does know is she saved his life.
Rickman also credits the team at Memorial Hospital for helping him through his recovery. He said they've been amazing and he couldn't have done it without them.
Rickman is expected to make a full recovery and head back home to Jackson very soon.