Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Character Of A Submariner

Here's a story that made the local media that I first looked at as a "this is so sad" type of thing -- a man stops on the Interstate to help a crash victim, and gets hit by another car driving down the road. Today, this story became more personal to me when I found out the injured Good Samaritan is a Submariner. Excerpts from the story:

Police say a 46-year old Pendleton-area man sustained critical injuries Monday afternoon when he was struck by an automobile while assisting at a crash scene on Interstate 84 near the John Day River.
Oregon State Police Sergeant Pat Shortt says Monday afternoon at 3:23 PM, a white 2006 Ford Focus driven by 47-year old Juana Fortier of Portland, was eastbound on Interstate 84 near milepost 116 when it hit a spot of black ice, slid off of the south side of the freeway and overturned.
Shortt says that despite sustaining minor injuries, Fortier was able to exit her vehicle. Another eastbound motorist, 46-year old Nels Hadden of Pendleton, stopped to help Fortier.
"At approximately 3:43 p.m. Hadden was standing on the shoulder of the freeway when an eastbound blue 2001 Volkswagen Beetle driven by 18-year old Elizabeth Murray of Pendleton, lost control and slid off the south side of the freeway striking Hadden."

A former shipmate of Mr. Hadden reported this to me:
He is really in bad shape....his wife has been providing updates...I can pass them on if you like. At this point...I think he will make it...but he will never be the same.
I think this is newsworthy because it reflects on the character of a submariner. Someone who is willing to help anyone rough weather...when he could have just driven on with his own business...and in this case he paid a tough price. Nels was an enlisted Sonarman, just a regular guy. He was a hard worker who would give you the shirt off his back, I stood a lot of watches with him as his sonar supervisor.
Here's the Oregon State Police accident report. Please keep Nels Hadden and his family in your prayers. I'll pass on any additional information as it comes available.

Update 0740 05 Feb: Updates on Mr. Hadden's condition can be found here and here. Nel's old shipmate provided the following update on what people can do to help:
There are a few things that anyone can do to help. The number one thing would be prayer and just goodwill to Nels, his wife Betsy and the rest of the family. The second would be to spread the word to let people know about his sacrifice.

The doctors estimate that Nels has received at least 50 units of blood. He made a one-man assault on the platelet supply at the American Red Cross. You can help by donating blood at your local Red Cross or traveling blood drive.

There are also some financial needs as well. You can to go into any US Bank and tell the teller you would like to donate to the Nels W. Hadden Beneficiary Donation Account. If you have any difficulty with them finding the account, let them know the account was established on 1/30/09. The account has been set up to accept wire transfers.

Also, if you would like to send the family a card, (flowers aren't allowed in ICU and there isn't any room in the waiting room) you can mail them to:

Legacy Emanuel Hospital
Nels Hadden
WWICU Room 13
2801 N. Gantenbein
Portland, Oregon, 97227
I really like the idea of going down and donating blood -- that helps everyone.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It just absolutely kills me to read this. I'll definitely be praying for Mr. Hadden and his family. If he were still on active duty, I'd say Mr. Hadden would have a meritorious promotion coming and atleast an MSM for stopping and assisting, and a Purple Heart for his sustained injuries.

Hopefully Mr. Hadden will be underway on the road to recovery.

A great update Joel, but damn that's sad to see.

Thanks, J.

1/29/2009 1:14 PM

Blogger Jamie S said...

Could you please email me privately? We were there when it happened trying to help out also and have been frantically searching for information the last few days on how Mr Hadden was doing.
I would appreciate it very much.

1/29/2009 1:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Hadden deserves all the credit in the world for his actions, and I wish him the best.

That said, the implication here is that it emblematic of submariners that they help in times of need. No. It is the characteristic of this man to help a stranger in need. This is not the characteristic of submariners. Submariners are tough, they persevere in adversity, they work really hard, and they have a tremendous team community. But submariners are not empathetic and they will crush those who they feel are unworthy regardless of whether help is needed or not.

1/30/2009 11:37 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have known Nels Hadden my entire life, he has always been a very nice person. He is still one of the nicest men I have ever met, and will go out of his way to help someone. His wife is a wonderful lady also and we need to pray for her and their children as well as for Nels. When you are in the presence of the Hadden family you can feel the love they have for each other. I pray everyday for them, please join me.

1/30/2009 1:14 PM

Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

Mr. Hadden is the kind of man we should all be--ready to lend a hand because he was the one in a position to do so.

It is notable that this post comes just after the one where bad things are linked to the Navy. It is nice, although unfortunate, that in this case Naval Service is a positive thing in his past.

2/01/2009 4:17 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a brother-in-law to Nels. He has had a really tough battle. He is now battling infection. For a while, it appeared that he was paralyzed, but we have positive sighns today as he is being removed from his drug-induced coma that he may have feeling in his arms and legs. He has lost one finger and will possibly lose another. He has a long way to go with major orthopedic surgery remaining after already having had numerous surgeries for internal injuries and fractures.

Thanks to all who are praying for his improvement, for his family and for the other people involved who are suffering because of what ahppened to Nels (the girl who hit him and the woman he rescued).

2/08/2009 2:31 PM


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