Foundry worker David Gravely knew he was going to die when he saw the upper portion of a 900-pound press closing in on him.
The 29-year-old New River Castings Co. worker had just one thought – he’d never see his wife and children again. The last thing he remembered before losing consciousness was the sound of his hard hat cracking under the press’ pressure.
Gravely blacked out as the press came down on his head, broke two of his ribs, punctured both lungs and crushed his spine. He awoke nine days later with a concussion and little feeling in his left leg, but a very lucky man.
“I really don’t want to see a machine again,” he said from his bed at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. “That’s the way it’s going to be for a long time.”
Gravely’s June 13 accident was as freakish and terrifying as they come.