By LYNETTE HAALAND,
Four Points News
In early November, John Holsinger walked out of Brookdale Lakeway rehab center, with a cane of course. Two months prior he nearly lost his life after falling some 50-feet while cycling.
On the day he was discharged from the rehab center, there was a group of Steiner Ranch cyclists and friends who were there to surprise Holsinger and cheer for him as he walked out.
“He has made an unbelievable start to a normal life again surprising all his doctors and therapist along the way,” said Hollie Kenney. “This is a miracle.”
Holsinger hopes to be able to go back to work in February or March.
“I’m getting stronger every day. Right now I’m doing outpatient physical therapy on my right arm and right leg,” said Holsinger, in an email exchange last week. “It’s going to take some time for everything to heal and get closer to normal. This is the slow, painful part.”
Steiner Ranch resident Holsinger is recovering from near fatal injuries sustained in a Labor Day bicycle accident in Georgetown where he fell some 50 feet from a bridge.
On Sept. 5, the 52-year-old triathlete met up with 50 riders from the Bat City Cycling club for a planned 60 mile bike ride through Northwest Austin.
Going approximately 30 mph at mile 16, a cyclist in front of him blew a tire and caused a domino-like crash.
Kenney, a fellow Steiner triathlete who is helping Holsinger, said a chain reaction was started with the riders behind the blowout falling too. In the process, Holsinger was pinned between a rider and the bridge railing, which Kenney said is very low and didn’t prevent the fall. Seconds later, he was laying on his right side. His helmet had come off, she said.
Holsinger’s immediate injuries were a collapsed lung, crushed pelvis, open fractures to legs, ankles and elbow as well as multiple breaks in arms, ribs, and two fractures in the spine. His most serious injury was an internal bleed from the mesenteric artery in the abdomen as well as suffering from an aortic dissection. Discovered about a week after the accident, he also has minor spinal injuries and brain damage, specifically brain shearing, according to his GoFundMe page.
Holsinger and eight additional bikers were injured in the accident which was about two miles south of FM 2338 on Ronald Reagan Boulevard in Georgetown. The two-lane bridge had been ridden repeatedly by Holsinger and his group.
Some have told Holsinger that it is due partly to his level of fitness that he survived the accident and is recovering as well as he is.
Holsinger is the father of three: Audra Volk, a junior at Colorado University in Boulder, Katherine, a junior at Vandegrift High School and John August, at 6th grader at Four Points Middle School. Holsinger is also treasurer for the Lady Vipers lacrosse team.
Kenney is helping Holsinger in the recovery process by hosting him at her house for a few months because insurance to cover his stay at rehab ended.
“He is trying to gain weight as he lost 20 lbs.,” Kenney said. “He is doing as expected with a few bumps in the road and just started to go home on his own for a night at a time.”