Accident survivor credits St. Cloud HospitalFrom Spotlight on Health - Summer 2010
Trace Roller and wife, Joyce, with their sons (from left) Jordan, 12, and Kellen, 14.
Trace Roller should have died on Aug. 7, 2005.
But thanks to God’s grace, his wife’s support, a state trooper, a helicopter and a Top 100 hospital, Roller is doing the things he loves: coaching his sons’ hockey teams, managing a Coborn’s long-term care pharmacy and helping other people every chance he gets.
Roller, now 41, was driving home to Sartell from Foley on that sunny Sunday afternoon. Witnesses say his pickup left Highway 23 doing about 60. He drove a few hundred feet through a grassy field, without losing speed, before hitting concrete barriers.
The impact was so loud that a highway patrol officer heard the noise a quarter of a mile away. The officer responded within seconds, calling the Foley Fire Department and St. Cloud Hospital. Firefighters cut Roller out of the truck; a LifeLink III crew flew him to the hospital.
Doctors suspect that Roller may have suffered a seizure before he started the drive home because he doesn’t remember a thing about the crash. But he sure remembers the details of his hospital stay.
“I was in the hospital for approximately three months. I missed six months of work. I broke 10 major bones and had my left leg amputated below the knee. I still have plates and screws in both arms and six screws in my right ankle,” Roller said. His right hip was shattered into six pieces. Bones protruded through the skin of his right arm, as well as his right and left ankle.
“I am so thankful that I was receiving care at one of the Top 100 hospitals in the country,” Roller said. “I am so grateful that in a community of our size, we have a hospital that is repeatedly recognized nationally.”
Roller is grateful to have been cared for close to home, so he could see his loved ones every day. He is thankful for the support of his wife, Joyce, countless people in the community –– and to God.
Roller attributes his recovery to more than surgeries, prosthetic devices and medications. “Everyone from the physicians to housekeeping was caring, smiling, skilled and helped me in the process of my healing,” he said of the St. Cloud Hospital staff. “The faith-based, spiritual aspect of the care provided also was very important to my healing.”
Learn more about St. Cloud Hospital's Top 100 designation