If you’ve been struggling with the Monday blues, here’s a little piece that will put things into perspective.
Last month, a man was brutally mauled by a grizzly bear while he and a friend were searching for a mule deer he had shot in the Custer-Gallatin National Forest of southwest Montana.
The victim of the attack was Rudy Noorlander, and he was life-flighted to a local hospital with serious injuries.
And here we are a month later, and Noorlander is finally able to leave the hospital after going through a number of reconstructive surgeries.
With that being said, the 61-year-old and his two daughters sat down for a press conference at the University of Utah Medical Center last Friday.
Due to his extensive injuries to his jaw (which he lost a large portion of), Noorlander’s daughters had to relay his message.
He gave this one inspirational line to the media:
“Even if there seems to be no hope, keep on fighting.”
His daughter Katelynn Davis told the crowd:
“The people who are there with him said, it’s really bad. We knew he’d fight no matter what, but we just didn’t know how much of a fight it was going to be.”
Dr. Hilary McCrary continued by saying Noorlander lost a large portion of his lower jaw, and his larynx was fractured.
And in some miracle, McCrary said he will be able to fully recover:
“He was very adamant that he was gonna fight this thing and get through it. For someone to be so enthusiastic about his prognosis and outcome that early is very heartwarming as a physician.”
Noorlander owns Alpine Adventures in Big Sky, Montana, an ATV and snowmobile rental facility. He’s an avid outdoorsman and has had a number of run-ins with bears. Although he was prepared for a bear encounter with bear spray and a gun, his gun misfired when the bear attacked.
Davis said part of the reason he was able to survive was because he was with a group, and the other hunters were able to call 911.
He wants to discuss the story again once he’s able to speak, and he also wants to write a book about the attack. His daughter also said he wants Cole Hauser, aka Rip Wheeler in Yellowstone, to play him in a movie.
He also joked by writing on a whiteboard that he would “win round #2” if he ever encountered the bear again.
He wrote in conclusion:
“Only by the hands of God am I here. I’ve had a lot of inspirations and I felt the need to share my story with others.
And believe it or not, I believe that this attack was an answer to my prayers and that potentially it could help somebody else going through something similar.”