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Print

Iowa shroomer felled by fallen tree

May 28, 2010 at 01:12 PM

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Denis Berns says he is a changed man after being nearly crushed to death by a hickory tree May 1 while hunting for mushrooms in Fayette County with two friends.

The dead tree, blown over by wind, compressed his lungs and pinned his face in the dirt.

The 51-year-old Berns says he wrenched one arm free and started digging until he got one finger in his mouth and cleared a passage for air.

Berns estimates it was 15 minutes before his friends saw one of his shoes lying nearby and deduced he was pinned beneath the fallen tree.

He was taken University Hospitals in Iowa City for five days’ treatment before his release in an upper body cast.

Berns says lying under the tree gave him time for soul searching and to decide to do things differently.

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