By Allana Rivera
“It all started on a Wednesday,” Ben Gail ’13 said dramatically, as he began to tell the story of how he not only broke one, but both, of his ankles in just over 24 hours.
He explained that it all started with his being late for English. He had started to run and was building up speed by the time he got to his classroom. However, before he could fully make it into the classroom, something went wrong. Gail was rounding the corner into the classroom when he put his left foot down to stop himself and he heard a resounding “crunch.”
Gail had such momentum that his body continued to fall and was then stopped abruptly by the door jam. He knew that his foot had landed awkwardly, landing on its outermost side instead of flat on the ground and that all of his weight had been put on that foot because of the door jam, but he did not believe anything was seriously wrong, just that he had suffered a slightly embarassing fall outside of his English class.
“The class was laughing hysterically,” Gail recalled.
His teacher urged him to go to the trainers’ office despite his doubts of any serious injury. The trainer, who examined his ankle, did not know exactly what was wrong, and suggested he get an x-ray. In the meantime, Gail was given crutches in order to get through the rest of the day.
Everything should have been fine, except that the crutches proved to be more of an obstacle than he thought.
Gail soon realized how difficult it was to use crutches in a school that seemed to be built vertically. He decided that the next morning he would see the trainer about getting a wheelchair for the remainder of his injury. Coming out of the parking lot, Gail made his way toward and then down the ramp leading from the back of Taper to the trainer’s office only a short distance away.
Gail was going slowly, making sure that because of the slope, handled his crutches with extra care. His caution, however, did not prove to be enough, as one of his crutches slid out from under him and he found himself landing on his opposite side in the exact same way as he had the day before. The only difference was that instead of a door jam, Gail himself put all his weight on his right foot as he tried to avoid falling forward.
As Gail fell, he remembers thinking “Man, I really hope I didn’t mess up my other ankle.”
“I managed to limp painfully to the trainers’ office only to find that they don’t have wheelchairs,” Gail said.
For a wheelchair, Gail must consult his own doctor. They were, however, able to send Gail home due to the amount of pain he was in.
Gail visited a doctor and not only received a wheelchair, but a cast for his two broken ankles.
Gail said the fracture of his growth plates were relatively mior and he is already walking on his casts.