SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — A Springfield man is in the hospital after crashing to the ground in a terrible paragliding accident.
The man was 100 feet in the air when everything went wrong. Now his neighbors are reaching out to help and hoping to see him again soon.
Late Monday afternoon James Carter was upgraded from critical to serious condition. That’s good news to neighbors who describe him as an adventurous man. Friends say he’s been paragliding for years.
On Sunday, Carter went gliding over Santiam Pass, but his adventure was cut short. YouTube videos show just the kind of adventure seeker he is.
“He enjoys life to the fullest,” said neighbor April Fonger.
Just after take-off, Oregon State Police say the paraglider Carter was operating suddenly lost power. Carter fell 100 feet to the ground, crashing violently.
“I hope he’s going to be okay. That really sucks. My son loves him,” Fonger said.
Carter’s next door neighbor Fonger couldn’t hold back tears when she found out.
“He’s a really good guy. That’s really scary. I couldn’t imagine falling out of the sky,” Fonger said.
Carter was rushed to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend with serious injuries. Neighbors, especially the children, were all very sad.
“My sister-in-law has six kids, and they’re always knocking on his door. He helps them air up their tires, fix the basketball hoops, fix the handlebars on their bikes,” said neighbor Sandra McCoy.
For a man who’s always helping everyone, neighbors jumped at the chance to return the favor.
“I really send out wishes to his family. If they need me to do anything, I’m right here,” Fonger said.
And they’re rooting for a successful recovery.
“He’s a fighter, so I hope he pulls through. It’s really sad to hear something like that happen to him,” Fonger said.
Neighbors say Carter also loves hunting, fishing, and boating. And they say he acts as the neighborhood watch guy, so they can’t wait until he returns home.