Eight-year-old Shae Crawford had never done any stunts on a trick bike before, but he wanted to try what his neighborhood friends were doing, so he got on the BMX stunt bike and tried to make a jump over a temporary ramp his friends had set up at an Andover park just down the street.
The bike wheel must have caught on the ramp, Crawford said, because before he knew what was happening, he was airborne. His face smacked against the pavement and the bike flipped onto him with a tire hitting the back of his head.
His mother Shelly Crawford said her son would not have been able to tell this story if he had not been wearing a bike helmet. Instead of paralysis or death, young Shae had a fractured nose that is still healing, a lacerated upper lip and some cuts and bruises on his elbows and knees.
Since the March 17 accident he and his mother have been sharing this story with kids and parents in the neighborhood. Shelly said she used to not see many of the kids wear helmets, but they seem to have got the message because many now wear helmets.
Shelly hopes that parents will bring their kids to upcoming bike helmet clinics in April and May to either buy a helmet or make sure the one they have fits properly. Shelly is a pediatric nurse at Mercy Hospital who has volunteered with the bike helmet clinic organizer Safe Kids Anoka County. Shae has tested out new bike helmets for his mother, so he got used to wearing them.
Shae will be at the April 10 bike helmet clinic at the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office in Andover to share his story.
Bike helmets for adults and children will be on sale at the four clinics, but availability is on a first-come, first-serve basis. The helmets are being sold for $12 each. Only cash or check will be accepted. There is no charge if you just want to make sure your helmet fits properly.
Bike helmet clinic times and locations:
•April 10 from 4-8 p.m. at the Blaine Police Department, 10801 Town Square Drive.
•April 10 from 4-7 p.m. at the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office, 13301 Hanson Blvd. in Andover.
•April 24 from 4-7 p.m. at the Fridley Police Department, 6431 University Ave. N.E.
•May 8 from 4-8 p.m. at the Blaine Police Department.
Eric Hagen is at email@example.com