A man who was injured in a deadly crash one year ago is making leaps and bounds in his recovery but says the pain of that night last June will always remain. Six people were killed in the crash on I-75 near Ooltewah when a tractor trailer driver failed to brake and barreled in to slow-moving traffic.
Ryan Humphries said he remembers only parts of what happened that night. Since Channel 3 last spoke to him it has been a long road to recovery with months of doctor’s appointments and surgeries.
“I was ready to go home. I was tired of being in the hospital,” said Ryan Humphries. Scars mark much of Ryan Humphries left arm. It is a painful reminder of the accident one year ago that killed six people on I-75. “On one hand it is a reminder, on the other hand it is an interesting story teller.”
He doesn't remember much of the crash. He woke up in the back of an ambulance, suffering with a severe head injury, a broken arm, and 3rd degree burns. “I didn't let it keep me from doing what I wanted to do. Injuries do take a while to heal.”
He spent weeks recovering, going through multiple surgeries, hoping one day to build back his strength. “It is back to as good as it's going to get without being normal.”
The year anniversary is an emotional day for Humphries. He's thankful for his life, but doesn't forget those who lost theirs. “I am thinking about the people who lost their life, but I am not letting it keep me down or keep me from living my life.”
Humphries' $10-million lawsuit against the driver and the trucking company is pending. He just hopes the man responsible will never forgot the scars he left on the community. “I don't hold anything against him, you make your choices in life and he made a bad one.”
Ryan has returned to work and hopes to get back into his dream jobs with cars. He continues to thank the first responders for their work that day, saying he wouldn't be here if it hadn't been for them.
The trial for the man behind the wheel of the tractor trailer, Benjamin Brewer, is expected to start in November. Brewer faces more than a dozen charges, including six counts of vehicular homicide and DUI.