I got struck by a car once.
I was around 10-years-old when I got struck by the vehicle on Wabash Avenue. Maybe that was my own brush with death. The accident became fresher in my memory a couple days ago as I was reporting for my website, Indiana Central News -- after I had seen paramedics covering a pedestrian's dead body with white sheets on Poplar Street.
It happened in the afternoon on a day during the summer before Fourth Grade. My sister, Cathy, nearly two years older than me, asked if I wanted to go to Kmart on Wabash Avenue. It's where Kroger is now. She informed me the store probably had the Brooke Shields doll I wanted. I agreed to go with her on our bikes there, although we knew we weren't supposed to cross that busy street.
I don't remember ever seeing that doll that day, nor do I even remember being inside the store.
I got hit near the intersection of 25th Street. That day, we would have proceeded smoothly to 25th Street, south to Mariposa Drive, on to the Meadows Shopping Center parking lot and then home from there had I not got hit crossing Wabash.
Cathy was ahead of me on her bike after we left the store. I had blindly followed her back out into Wabash Avenue and directly into the path of the car-- around where Starbucks' drive - thru entrance is today. She had made it across safely and turned around when she heard the impact.
As soon as I rode into the street, I remember hitting the top of my head on the hood --- of what I am now thinking was a red car. It didn't hurt at all. I felt the hood sink in a little and then I slid off and stood back up as the car came to a stop, in perfect timing to escape physical injury. I didn't have a scratch on me, nor did my bike. I did have some dirt on my face, arms, legs and clothes after getting thrown from the bike.
The driver, if I remember correctly, was a black male. He looked worried and I don't recall him speaking. A white woman driver quickly stopped and yelled out, asking if I was OK. Cathy stated I was OK. I don't think I talked at all. I just remember feeling dazed. I felt numbness all over, even as I followed Cathy the rest of the way home on our bikes.
It seems like my parents had someone visiting with them in the living room when we returned home. Cathy continued to speak for me, explaining that I got hit by a car because I wanted to go to Kmart to look at Barbies, as though it was my idea.
It's neat how I suddenly remember these details -- even the old love seat we had in 1980, with a brown and gold leaf design fabric, that I was sitting on, as Cathy spoke. Looking at me, everyone just assumed I was OK. But now I'm just remembering that numb, weird feeling I had experienced. I felt like my hearing was a little muffled.
Maybe I had a concussion. Who knows now?
My parents were more angry about us crossing Wabash Avenue than anything. In a firm tone, my mom told me I should go take a bath and go on to bed. I went upstairs and did just that.
So, no accident report. No cell phone photo witness accounts. No medical attention. In retrospect, I think all those things would have been good to have had at the time. All I have are these vague memories of that incident.
.Lucy Perry can be reached at LPerrynews@gmail.com
Journalist, Terre Haute
Lucy Perry, 47, enjoys writing about issues in her hometown. She periodically expresses personal opinions in her blog, Terre Haute Times.
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