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Good Samaritan University of Utah Health Doctor Saves Fallen Biker

Nov 30, 2014

November 14 was a typical Friday morning for Chris Fraizer. Besides the chilly weather due to a recent snowfall, her bike ride along Wasatch Drive to work that morning was nothing out of the ordinary. As a bike commuter who rides 150-200 miles per week, she had taken this ride hundreds of times before. But in the blink of an eye, that all changed.

While swerving to avoid an oncoming SUV who hadn't seen her in the dark, Chris hit black ice and was tossed from her bike, landing hard on the asphalt. The car drove away, and Chris was left alone and injured in the road.

"I couldn't put weight on my left leg so I scuttled on my stomach to drag my bike to the side of the street," says Chris. "I must have looked like a tadpole in crisis."

After retrieving her bike, Chris tried to push her body up using her hands. But instead of standing, she lost balance and slid down a slight embankment where she was hardly visible on the dark winter morning. With her cell phone in her bike pouch, out of reach, Chris began to realize the seriousness of her situation.

While Chris attempted, and failed, to stand again, a car pulled up and the driver asked if she needed help.

"I told him, 'Yes, if I can just reach my bike, I think I will be okay,'" says Chris.

The driver happened to be University of Utah Health physician John Murray, MD, who was also on his way to work. After assessing the damage, he realized Chris required medical attention. Just bringing her to her bike was not enough.

Murray carried Chris in his arms, gently placed her in his car, and, after checking her health insurance card, drove her to University of Utah Hospital.

"He even rolled me in on a wheelchair and brought me my bike," says Chris. "I get tears in my eyes thinking about it."

Two hours later, Chris was in surgery for a complete hip replacement. The impact of the fall had fractured her femur beyond reasonable repair. Her bone was shattered and needed immediate attention.

"Everyone was very nice and helpful at University of Utah Health," says Chris. "The doctors, nurses, even the x-ray team had me laughing."

Chris is on the road to recovery and will be back on her bike again soon. But she is still grateful for her Good Samaritan, who stopped and took care of her when she needed it the most.

"Dr. Murray is an outstanding doctor and human being," says Chris. "I don't know what I would have done without him."