February 14, A day of love, 5 families lives torn to hell!
(Idaho Falls, ID)
Amber Lynn Denton
In the early morning hours of February 14, 2008, My sister Amber Denton 16, and her fellow co-workers, Jacquelyn Kipper 20, Crystal Kipper 24, Jason Birch 30, and John Richardson 19, Had just got off work from Riley Creek Restaurant and from what we heard was one of there busiest nights ever, when they decided to go to either Jason or Johns house for the evening we are not exactly sure.
In the time that they where there they decided that they where going to head down to Pocatello, Idaho from Twin Falls, Idaho to Jacquelyn's apartment she had been renting because she is an Idaho State University Student and was off on vacation visiting her parents and helping her dad with the restaurant.
My sister called our father sometime in those hours after getting off work to ask permission to go to Jason or Johns house with Crystal and Jackie (she didn't tell him that she was going to pocatello or ask permission).
John Richardson 19, volunteered on the night of Valentine's Day to drive his co-workers to Pocatello in his 2001 Dodge Stratus, upon entering the freeway John gunned it and took off, now we are not sure when either of the occupants began to drink that night and I am sure we will never find out, but we do know that they had been drinking and they had been drinking before deciding to leave off to Pocatello.
John the driver had an alcohol content level of 0.12 which is fifty percent higher than the legal limit 0.08 for a driver over the legal drinking age of 21. In the meantime of driving over 120mph (mind you its 75mph on freeways) John dropped a unlight cigarette on to the floor and bent to retrieve it upon coming back up he realized that he was going over the line or mabye he was just seeing double and tryed to correct it, but overcorrected and lost control, flipping the car so hard that the car bounced of the pavement and went sideways in to the air flipping 3 times end over end jumping the adjacent freeway and landing about 121 ft past Frontage road which is the highway next to the freeway.
Amber, Jackie, Crystal and Jason were ejected out, Jason Birch died instantly, hitting his head with the force of 2000lbs, Jackie's femur snapped 2in below her hip indicating that her legs came clear over her head in a backwards position, Five fractured vertabraes in her lower back, 6 broken ribs a punctured lung a dislocated shoulder and a broken collarbone. Crystal suffered a collapse lung, a severley lacerated left foot which she lost, a shattered knee cap, fractured collarbone, bruised liver and lacerated spleen. Both Jackie and Crystal suffered road rash over 60% of there body.
Amber my sister who we later found out did not have a drop of alcohol in her system was ejected from the back seat threw the front windshield at a rate of 6mph hitting the ground at 9-1000 lbs of pressure fracturing her skull, she had a laceration from the top of her eyebrow to the lower left side of her back indicating that she hit the ground so hard that her left side exploded and moved her internal organs and chest cavity opposite of how they are supposed to be, she had 4 crushed ribs a broken neck and a dislocated spine meaning she dislocated her top half from her bottom half, a ruptured spleen, 6 broken toes and fingers a broken leg a crushed arm and shoulder both sides of her collarbone was broken, a lacerated ear(which is gone now) and microscope slices of glass in her eyes and face, 16 lacerated cuts or deep wounds on her body, and a broken nose. She received 3,215 stitches on her face and back 1,312 stitches on all other lacerations on her body, 37 surgeries on her bones and internal organs, to put them where they belong. she received 22 pins in her lower back to hold her together a plastic ball joint in her elbow and shoulder, 9 pins in her neck, 2 plastic joints for her fingers, a total reconstuction on her teeth and tongue and skin graphs for her ear.
Jason Birch the driver was the only one wearing a seat belt (how ironic is that) and was not injured or even received a scratch from this accident.
I cant not explain in words the feeling you get when you get that call, my sister Christina called me at 5:02am on February 14, 2008 to tell me, my first reaction was to ask her which one of her kids got hurt, or which elder past away never in a million years was I expecting her to say "Ash, are you sitting down? Amber's been in a bad accident, I don't know if she is going to make it or not, there Life Flighting her right now, I don't know, I don't know. "oh my god I don't think she's going to make it, there saying she's not breathing, oh my god they dont have a pulse, they dont have a pulse, come on Amber...come on, oh god she's gone there taking her away I can't see her anymore, call dad, they couldn't get ahold of dad, call dad? This is how I heard it the exact words to the tee I will never forget those words her panicked voice, when they reached the hospital she was following them as they where rushing her through the hallway, I can still hear the doctor saying we've got no pulse and a bunch of other things.
I had to make the call to my dad, and his groggy voice "hello" and I sucked it up all I could and told him, I will never forget the eerie shriek of his voice as he dropped the phone and ran to get dressed and wake my step mother up.
Anyways my sister survived and is making a full recovery, she has short term memory and can only remember people she new before the accident, she can only remember things as far as 1-2 days and then she cant, and the doctors let her go to her prom but with stipulations. she is still in her cast and wheelchair bound for right now, but at least we get to see her smiling face everyday.
Crystal and Jackie are making a full recovery, Jason was buried on February, 17 2008, he had just turned 30 on February 14, 2008 the day of the accident, he was not 30 years old for 2 hrs and his life was taken from him. Jason the driver is in jail awaiting trial on 4 aggravated DUI charges and one voluntary vehicler manslaughter charge.
I hope I never come face to face with this man for my own reasons. This is the result of alcohol and driving, I can't say it enough to the people who have dealt with this how sorry I am for their pain and anguish and how sorry I am to the people who make them last moment decisions to get behind the wheel and forever change people's live's and I'm glad for the people who do have the chance to see there loved one again, and am hopeful for the survivors for the tragic life changes they have been forced to endure.