Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Heavy-Duty Rescue

Here's a neat little story about a 500-pound man who went tubing on the St. Croix River in Wisconsin.

It seems the man's tube went flat (no kidding?) ... when he tried to walk to shore he had chest pains, then hurt his knee and ankle after he slipped on some uneven rocks.

Because he weighs 500 pounds, it took rescuers 12 hours to get this guy out of the water.

At one point they tried a hovercraft, but it couldn't lift the man's weight.

So a group of men made a raft out of wood and 3 canoes. But there wasn't enough water for it to float.

So they used that contraption as a stretcher, but the man's weight made it difficult for the rescuers to pick him up and carry him -- figure a wet 500-pound guy, plus the wood and 3 canoes ... that's heavy.

So the story says 40 to 50 rescuers took turns carrying the guy 2 feet at a time until they reached an area that was deep enough to float him the rest of the way.

Wow. How bizarre.

This guy is only 39 years old, so I guess the first thing I want to know is whether his weight is voluntary or medical. If it's medical, then end of story.

But if it's voluntary, then (a) that's just shamefully disgusting, and (b) I want to know what happens now: Is he so mortified by making the national news that he'll drop a few pounds? Does he skip any more outings and become one of those obese recluses that just stays in bed and grows larger?

I'll keep an eye out for more info.

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