CHEATHAM COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Cheatham County Emergency Medical Services worked to keep a young man alert and responsive after an experience that many don’t live to tell.
“I remember slipping, sliding down and thinking ‘this is it,'” said Harrison Hester
The 21-year-old said he and his friends decided to go to a set of cliffs in Ashland City. He added, that he took it too far.
“I climbed up about 50 feet and then realized I didn’t have a place to jump off of, and on my way back down a rock broke from the cliff wall and I fell backward.”
He then tumbled about a hundred feet into the Harpeth River. News 2 obtained a cellphone video that showed Hester climbing the cliff and the moment emergency crews began to respond on the scene.
Hester reflected, “I’m lucky to be on this earth still.”
Shortly after the fall, Hester was airlifted to Vanderbilt. He thanked first responders, his friends and others who rushed him to safety.
“They got me there speedily and they took care of me, and I’m very grateful for everybody who was involved.”
His mom said the experience was every parent’s worst nightmare.
Laurie Peura said, “There’s no words I can really use to describe how it felt to get the news.”
A before photo of Hester shows that he has a long road to recovery.
Hester showed his wounds and described them, “my orbital is fractured, and I have severe lacerations all over my body and my heel is completely sliced open.”
Even with his injuries, Hester said that the worst pain is emotional.
He wants to warn others that this situation is something to be avoided at all costs,
“Don’t take big risks like that. I mean, I understand it’s summer – you’re drunk, it’s fun. But it’s just not worth it. It’s really just not worth it.”