does anyone here have any stories regarding self inflicted gunshot wounds? I am a new member, have been shooting hand guns for several years with my wife. We recently had an experience and wondered about other peoples.
Here is the story, should anyone care to read it, this is my introduction to the group.
Letter is in response to the 11-23 05 post on your web site news letter.
As I sit here at home for the 5th week of my recovery I started to do some research on others with this experience. after reading the post from the genteman who put a .45 round thru his hand I now relalize that I am not alone in how I feel or how I reacted. This man had a lot of courage to tell his story and I admire him for his honesy. It also gives me solace to know that I am not the only one out there. Here is my story,
Being almost 40 yrs old I have hunted and shot for sport since my early childhood. When my wife of 17 yrs recently expressed an interest in handgun shooting I was ecstatic. we both read up and bought her her first gun, went to the range and practiced many aspects of gun safety and she has gotten very good at target shooting, sometimes better than me. well, she got a new gun so I figured it was time for me to finally get the 1911 .45 that I always wanted. I read everything I could find about this style gun and settled on the one I wanted.
I got my gun on a tues. went that night and ran 250 rnds thru it, took it home, broke it down, claned it lovingly and put it away in the case. On thurs. of the same week I came home from work. Mywife was reading in the bedroom, kids were eating dinner in the dining room. I sat down on the bed to look at the new gun. Broke it down again, reassembled it, installed a clip, and chambered a rnd of 185 grain Remington Golden Sabre. To the best of my recollection my mistake came during the decocking procedure. While movig the gun to point down the floor between my legs my thumb slipped off the hammer and BANG. One round into my inner thigh about 3 inches above my left knee.
All I can say for sure is I saw my pants leg poof up. It really did not hurt initially. My wife looked up from her book and askes "did you just shoot yourself?" "yep" I said, "call 911." Now at the time I was pretty calm. My wife being an RN with alot of ER time was pretty cool too. My ears were not ringing nor was the pain overwhelming. I got up, grabbed a couple bath towels to pack the wound and went out to sit on the back porch and wait for help to arrive. My wife made the call and came out on the porch to help me pack the wound. At this point I was bleeding pretty bad, having left a nice trail thru the house. I had my 18 yr old son take of my work boot and it was filled with blood.
Now I'm starting to worry about the femoral artery, as is my wife because she knows what to look for. Four more bath towels and a tourniquet around that seemed to lessen the blood lose. Here I am on the back porch, smoking a cigarette, talking to my wife, waiting for the cops and the rescue squad. The cops get there first, I direct them into the bedroom where I had left the gun after removing the clip and putting it in my pocket to avoid any of my kids getting ahold of it. I'm still pretty calm, teling them what happened and telling my wife to show them where everything is.
The EMT's arrive and start treating me and load me up for my first ambulance ride of my life. 10 minutes at the hospital and they tell me they are going to Flight For Life me to a different hospital because I need a vascular specialist. The police are at the hospital to question me and take pictures of my wound. I tell them to take a picture of my stupid face while they are at it. The police were very polite thru the whole process and even laughed when I said this. My wife arrives in time to say goodbye and watch get the first helicopter ride of my life.I was conscious the whole ride, and when I arrived at the trauma center I was swarmed by about 15 people in the ER. 15 minutes and several X-rays later I was rushed into the first of 3 surgerys.
The slug entered the inside of my left thigh, went to the side and under my knee, and fragmented in the middle of my calf, with one small piece exiting the back of my calf. when I woke the next morning my calf was about the size of my thigh and slit open on both the inside and outside from ankle to knee due to what they call compartment syndrome, excessive blood swelling between the compartments of muscle. They had to cut to relieve the pressure because there was only a very faint pulse in my foot. Somehow or another I did miss all major arteries, no damage to my knee, or any tendons. Two more surguries and a toal of 12 days in the hospital and I am walking again with some neve damage in my foot and a bunch of ugly scars.
Talking with my wife now we both agree that strangely enough we both agree that when the gun went off, it didn't seem that loud. And we are both quite astonished at how calm we both were thru most of it. I was quite embarrassed at myself, even though my wife and family kept telling me it was just an accident. My family and coworkers have all been very supportive, and have helped me to stop feeling like a complete idiot. It ook me a month before I was able to go back to the range and pick that gun up and fire it agian. A good friend went with me and after a few shaky rounds I was back to nice groupings on paper targets. It will probably be awhile before I am completley comfortable again, but I know I will be.
The police did confiscate every gun in the house, including my sons BB gun, but returned the all with no problems and a note saying they hoped all was well. I guess the lesson here is always make sure THE MUZZLE IS CLEAR! Thanks for listening, and I hope somebody gets something from this. I also have some pretty bizzare pics if anyone is interested to see what a .45 hollow point can do. My wife also retrieved the shell casing from a basket of laundry and I carry it as a reminder on my keyring to never forget.
Toytek - well, what can I say - other than a big OUCH!!
I thank you very much for taking the trouble and time to write this all up for us - it is certainly a very salutary experience. It proves very much, well my take - that if only one rule is never broken it should be #2 - never point at anything you do not wish to destroy!!! I need hardly say that of course :wink:
I have a medical background and without wanting to seem macabre would be most interested to see pics - adding that I would also like if you are agreeable, to maybe use them (if anonymous I am assuming) - for educational purposes when I teach NRA courses.
Thx again - oh and - I am going to spread that write-up a bit, into para's just to make easier reading :wink:
Both my best friend and I were into guns while in High School. Unfortunately, we didn't have supportive parents and had to wait until we turned 18 and each purchased our own Ruger 10/22.
As time progressed, I got married and joined the military and luckily had my first assignment located just 100 miles from my hometown.
One evening, I went back to visit my buddy. We hadn't seen each other in about a year, despite the distance.
We sat around and had some beers. My buddy also smoked a little marijuana, but I did not as I was very into maintaining my career in the military.
In any case, he really wanted to show me his new pistol. A Beretta 92F. He was excited, because it was what we used in the Army.
He was sitting in front of me on the couch. He racked the slide and I saw the snap cap fly out. My assumption was that the gun was not loaded. WRONG!
In the next instant, I heard a pop. Didn't even seem as loud as a firecracker. My buddy looked up at me and said, "Man, I think I just shot myself." He looked a little bewildered. I looked him over and didn't see anything, and I had not felt anything.
Just as I was about to tell him, that he must have missed and it went into the couch, I noticed a small spot appear on his leg and slowly spread, much as water does on a paper towel.
I looked at him, "Man, I think you shot yourself!"
Immediately, I had his girlfriend grab some towels. She was freaking out, but I knew first aid and was calm. I applied direct pressure, and by the screaming, apparently to much on the broken bones beneath the shot site.
The hospital was around the corner, so I put him in the back seat of my car (I was fine to drive), and drove him to the ER myself.
Within minutes of our departure, the police were in the house confiscating all the guns in the house. Additionally, they noted the burned up joint and the alcohol.
At the ER my buddy seemed to have to wait an extraordinary length of time to be seen. While he was being seen, the police arrived and questioned me. I told them it was a stupid accident and that yes, drugs and alcohol were involved.
The police officer asked me if I was also under the influence of marijuana, and I told him I wasn't. He then began to threaten my military career, stating that could get kicked out for drug use. I told him to test me or go find someone else to harass.
My friend had been lucky. He didn't hit the artery, but the hollow-point 9mm round did hit bone. Both bone and bullet fragments were found throughout his thigh. A titanium pin and rod were eventually put in to support the leg. He would heal.
First, alcohol and drugs don't mix with guns.
Second, if the four fundamentals had been observed, things would not have happened the way they did.
Finally, guns, though we call them toys at times, are a heavy responsibility to never be taken lightly.
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