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First for those of you that don’t like to see pictures of burns – please exit now.  For those that are curious what a natural gas fireball can do to one’s body – here you go:


IMG_1788On Wednesday June 3rd we decided to cook hot dogs out in the evening.  It just so happens that it was very windy that day and it was also very humid.  I started the grill and walked away to help Karrie and the girls shuck corn out in the prairie.  Upon my return I noticed that the burners had blown out (which is not uncommon with the wind).

I opened the grill hood for what seemed like a fair amount of time, didn’t smell any gas, and hit the ignitor…much to my surprise there was apparently a lot of gas pooled in the grill.  For those that don’t know natural gas is lighter than air so it tends to dissipate quickly, but if it doesn’t then it burns around 1163 degrees F.  At this point, my shirt was on fire (Nike Dry Fit burns quick) and I had second and third degree burns on my arms and left hand.  I had the piece of mind to shut the gas off and run into the house and begin showering my arms off while my lovely wife Karrie soaked towels so we could get to the hospital – the pictures above are the initial hospital intake pictures.

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These pictures are from day 2 – after they bandaged me up at the hospital, I went to a burn unit the next day in Springfield.  The worst burns were on my fingers where the nasty blister was and my fingertips were completely burnt pale white.  The picture with the hair on my wrist is where my new Apple watch was sitting so it protected what was underneath.  All in all the burns didn’t look terrible, but the next days would bring the real fun…

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These pics would have been from day three after the burn, as you can see the skin is now starting to show it’s true color.  At this point I can barely move my right arm and the left arm is very stiff as well.  The hand is okay, but the big nasty blister is gone and now exposed – which never feels good.  The worst part here is anything near a joint is starting to hurt.  We kept bacitracin on the burns and wrapped and re-wrapped them twice a day.

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Fast forward to one week after the accident – and here is how things look without bandages.  Over all, it is healing well, but the arms at the elbows remain very sore.  My hand healed nicely and the doctor even mentioned that everything was healing very well.  I am now one week and two days in and I hope to be to band-aids on my hands by Monday.

In total – this experience sucked, but could have been much worse.  I could have burnt my face like Hannah Storm did, or worse yet others could have been hurt.  I never in a million years would have expected this, I have worked on that grill for years with not even a flash – which just comes to show that every once in a while things don’t go as planned.  I am blessed to have the family and friends around us that have helped watch the kids, shuttle me around, and help out where needed.  I hope to be back to normal in a couple weeks, but until then healing, wrapping, and blessings continue!

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