Chad Dubuisson and Rick Gattone have both been caving for many years. But this weekend when they headed out to drop forty five feet down into a cave, they had no idea their ropes would fail... sending Gattone plummeting to the bottom, and Dubuisson running for help.
Dubuisson says, "The plan was to go in through the top and come out through the bottom, there's four repels along the way."
But on the first repel his plan went terribly wrong when his caving partner Rick Gattone fell thirty five feet in a quarry in Marion County.
Dubuisson says he felt, "Sheer panic. I was right near the lip of the pit when it happened, as quickly as it happened, it was over with."
Dubuisson works at On Rope One and both he and Gattone have been caving for years. But when the knot just failed, Gattone fell. Sending Dubuisson a half mile down the mountain to call for help.
Post by Brad Tipton on Aug 16, 2007 17:28:37 GMT -5
I spent some time with Rick today. He is doing much better since the surgery to repair his broken pelvis. He realizes he has a long road to recovery, but he is motivated and looking forward to getting on his feet again.
Everyone who responded on Saturday were lights out. The team responded quickly, and everyone worked hard to get Rick out. Despite the sweltering heat, the rescue went off without a hitch. We were certainly blessed with a lot of favorable conditions. Little water going into the pit, the old pipe forest had been removed a month prior, and the majority of the team had been to the cave at least once this year. All those factored into a successful day. I will keep everyone updated as Rick progresses.
Post by Brad Tipton on Aug 21, 2007 22:15:01 GMT -5
Some of the team visited Rick in rehab today before our monthly meeting. Rick has been moved to Siskin where he is getting daily rehab. He is progressing quite well and the doctors projected if he suffers no setbacks he could go home in about 2 weeks. The doctors think he won't have the surgery on his vertebrae for many months. Rick is in good spirits and looking forward to the comforts of home.
Post by Brad Tipton on Aug 24, 2007 14:25:56 GMT -5
I talked with Rick today and he confirmed that he will be going home on Sunday. He will continue rehab from home. He sounds very excited about the move. Lynn I am sending you his home address since he is headed there in 2 days.