By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
Don Lovenburg continues to recover at a Kearney hospital from injuries he sustained in a mid-afternoon accident Saturday between Imperial and Enders.
After initial treatment at Chase County Community Hospital after the 3:15 p.m. accident, Lovenburg was air-lifted to Kearney later Saturday.
Chase County Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Vodicka said a 2010 Ford F250 crew cab pickup, driven by Cletus J. Weber, 44, of Aurora, Colo., was eastbound on U.S. Highway 6, east of Imperial, when it attempted to make a left-hand turn onto old Highway 6, in front of Lovenburg, 64, of Enders.
Lovenburg was westbound in his 1998 GMC pickup. Deputy Vodicka said Lovenburg tried to avoid the collision, but his pickup collided with the passenger side front of the Colorado pickup.
The collision sent Lovenburg into the ditch on the north, and spun the Weber vehicle around. It came to rest on the highway’s shoulder, facing southwest.
Hollie Thompson of Denver was traveling behind the Weber pickup and saw the accident. She went to the aid of Lovenburg, covering him with a blanket and applying pressure to his head.
She said he was not coherent initially, but after about five minutes, he spoke, asking what had happened.
Thompson’s mother, Bonnie Weiss of Imperial, called 911. They were traveling together eastbound on the highway, along with Stuart Weiss and Thompson’s son.
Deputy Vodicka said both pickups were totaled.
The impact required the Imperial Volunteer Fire Department’s jaws equipment to remove Lovenburg from his pickup.
All four occupants of the Colorado pickup were treated and released from Chase County Community Hospital.
Others in the Colorado vehicle were David Clouse, 58, of Ogallala; and Marc Hedson, 16, and Tanner Weber, 16, both of Aurora, Colo.
Deputy Vodicka said a citation was issued to Cletus Weber for failure to yield the right-of-way.
The Imperial EMS had two ambulances at the scene.
Also assisting at the accident scene were Deputy Sgt. Vince Lopez and Imperial Police Chief Larry Browning.
expected for Lovenburg
Lovenburg’s son, John, also of Enders, said Tuesday that his father will be undergoing a third surgery sometime this week to repair his broken left hip.
Since the accident and his transport to Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney, Lovenburg has undergone two surgeries to repair his broken right leg, which included the implanting of steel rods. His injuries also required the implanting of screws and plates in his broken right ankle.
John Lovenburg noted the second surgery earlier this week was necessary to open and clean the wounds to prevent infection.
In addition to the broken bones, he also sustained a number of cuts and scrapes and a lot of bruises.
“He’s in a lot of pain,” and on a lot of pain medication, said his son.
According to his doctors, Lovenburg said his dad will be in the hospital and recuperating for an extended period of time.