Tyler Campbell has several broken bones. He says it was his family and his faith in God that brought him home.
by Heather Graf
HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - A healing teenager shared his story from his hospital bed about the three days he spent trapped at the bottom of a steep ravine.
Tyler Campbell was pretty banged up and has several broken bones, but he's alive. He said it was his family and his faith in God that ultimately brought him home.
"Thanking the Lord," he said. "He was the main one I believe, in that situation. If it wasn't for him, I couldn't have gotten through it, seriously."
The 19-year-old spoke to us Thursday from his bed at a Huntsville Hospital, just across the state line from his home in Lincoln County. He showed us the bumps and bruises that now cover much of his body and said his broken leg and shoulder are on the way to healing.
Tyler said he vaguely remembers his accident on Saturday, when he fell asleep and his truck crashed down an embankment off Interstate-65.
Then, when he woke up, Tyler discovered he was injured and essentially trapped.
"I could see cars going by, and I saw the light reflecting, and I was yelling for help at everyone I could, but nobody answered," he said.
He tried to climb his way out of the ravine on Sunday, and again on Monday, but fell twice, back to the ground because of his injuries.
By Tuesday, he was hungry, thirsty, and desperate. Somehow, he managed to crawl to the interstate above, where a passing driver spotted him, and loaned Tyler a phone, so he could finally call his father.
"And I talked to him, I said, ‘Hey Daddy,' like a normal conversation,'" he said. "He started crying, I started crying too, it was pretty emotional."
Believe it or not, on Monday morning, when Tyler had been trapped for about two days, there was a serious accident on I-65, just up the embankment from where he and his truck were hidden in the woods.
Tyler said he could see the lights of emergency vehicles flashing, and at one point, he started screaming when a Highway Patrol helicopter flew right over his head, but they never spotted him.
He survived by drinking rainwater that collected in a piece of his vehicle's broken headlight.
Tyler underwent surgery Wednesday afternoon on his broken leg. He was able to go home Thursday night, where he spent his first night at home since the accident.