Donate to the “Help Jimmy Fund” at the EmpireBMX site!
Click image and wait for sequence to load. credit: Keith Mulligan
The following story of what happened to Jimmy is by Chad Shackelford taken from the Odyssey site, posted on November 8, 2007…
Some of you have heard by now that Jimmy Le Van got hurt this weekend in New jersey. Chad Shackelford fill us in.
November 3rd, we all flew into Newark for the Red Bull Down and Dirty contest in Asbury Park. The contest was on Sunday and went well. The next day Jimmy Levan, Aaron Ross, Chase Hawk, Wade Young, Jim Cielencki and myself went back up to Newark to start our 5 day east coast trip ahead. Our next stop was Wades friend, Tommy’s house to drop off his car and start our trip. Our plan was to head into the city for the day to shoot some lifestyle and ride the Banks. While we were loading up at Tommy’s, Jimmy and Chase were goofing off on the skateboard that Chase bought the previous weekend.
In front of Tommy’s is a pretty serious hill, that’s basically one giant S curve. The road is rough, covered in gravel and potholes. Jimmy walked up to the top as we were loading stuff up and started cruising down the hill. He bombed the whole thing first try, it was sick. We thought it would be rad to get a shot of him bombing it again. So, after we pulled the camera out and Jimmy got back to the top of the hill, we were ready to shoot. I need to stress how bad of a road this was. It was long, steep, and rough. Not too mention, Jimmy went about a 100 ft. higher up, than the first time.
I yelled out “Action!!!” and Jimmy started cruising down, he gave a little ollie, then a power-slide that sent him straight to a pretty rough tuck and roll. As usual, Jimmy got up laughing, knowing that he just got a hilarious clip. He grabbed the board and jogged back up to the top of the hill. Now ready to get the clip, he took off again. He gave another ollie and a couple of successful power-slides. At this time he was about to where we were standing, which was half way down the hill, He gave a “Shaka Bra” and started to pick up mad speed as he hit the steepest part of the hill. He was going about 20 mph and almost at the bottom of the hill. As he neared closer to the bottom, he got speed wobbles bad and that’s when it all turned horrific. In the blink of an eye, Jimmy caught a bad wobble and the board shot out from under him, sending him directly to the back of his head, at again, about 20 mph. He immediately went limp. Chase, Wade and Jim C ran down to check on him, thinking that he just knocked himself out and he’d be up in a minute with a slight headache. I continued to stay up top shooting. Instantly, they realized what happened and flagged me down.
I ran as quickly as possible to the scene. When I got there, Jimmy was snoring. At this point it had been about 1.5 min, we started to worry. We tried to let him come up on his own, but then we realized he has bleeding and panicked. Wade was already on the phone with 911. He was out for around 3 mins and we started to really worry. The operator said the EMT’s were on there way and they would be there soon, just hold tight and we’ll be there. By this time Jimmy started to come to, completely disoriented. With no clue where he was, what day it was, what had happened, he tried to stand up and walk around. When he did this, we really saw how bad the exterior gash was.
We immediately tried to wrap his head in towels, butt he was reluctant and kept taking them off. He made no sense, babbling about not being drunk and wanting to go back to the girls house, where were we at? I held him by the arm and walked him up to the house as he staggered alongside me. I got him to the top of the hill and sat him in a chair in front of Tommy’s to wait for the Ambulance. Again, we kept pressure on his head, but he needed an ambulance. The police arrived and after, the EMT’s arrived. They immediately started wrapping the exterior wound, which was about 2-3 inches long on the back of his head. They pulled out the stretcher and a neck brace, laid him on the stretcher and started to put on the neck brace. He immediately wasn’t having it and resisted leaving the scene at all.
After sedating Jimmy, and an eventful trip to the hospital Jimmy got to the hospital and is getting the help he needs. He has a bruised brain and a fractured skull. Because of his injuries and history of being aggrevated when he comes out of anesthesia, He still remains in a drug induced coma, The doctors are confident that he will recover soon, but he will surely be in the hospital for at least a week.
Jimmy’s sister and mom are with him in the hospital now.
We are hoping that Jimmy will be awake and coherent by the time we get back to jersey on Saturday evening. The most we all can do is stay positive and hope for the best.
Jimmy is one tough guy, who’s been through a lot. He will definitely pull out of this and continue on his legacy.
Get well soon friend, were all pulling for you.
– Chad Shackelford
The following is from Jim Bauer, posted on the Odyssey site on November 19, 2007…
As you know, Jimmy Le Van went down hard in New Jersey a few weeks ago.
Until now he had been in a drug induced coma, for healing purposes. Early this morning Jimmy is officially awake, but not too coherent. All the tubes have been removed except for one IV. He asked his sister earlier if she knew Chris Moeller,”the bad ass flatlander” haha. This is great news on the road to recovery. Thanks to everyone for their outpouring of support.
Bad news is this hospital stay and recovery is going to be EXTREMELY expensive. Empire stepped up to the plate right away with the Help Jimmy Fund. Much props to Empire BMX to being so quick to help out. Empire will match whatever you donate, and Odyssey will match what you AND Empire donate. Basically whatever you can do will be quadrupled, so give what you can. We appreciate it and more so, Jimmy will appreciate it.
To donate go here!
Jim Bauer is auctioning his one-off, custom Metal bike to help raise money to give to Jimmy.
Click here to bid!
The following is from Tom Hooper and was posted on the Metal site on November 21, 2007…
I spent the whole day with Jimmy today, he is doing a lot better but is very confused and cannot recall a lot of the last year. His insurance will not cover the rehabilitation he needs, he is going to need to go to a rehabilitation center for serious brain injuries. I was talking with his mum today and we are going to see if we can get him into a center in JFK Edison under some sort of charity or low earning fund, but this will cost $70.000—$40,000 before, and the rest after.
He needs to be there soon, so if you can pass it along to anyone raising funds, etc. that his family needs the money by the first of December, so he can be in rehab for month and get back to be his good old self again.