On Tuesday, a hunter was reunited with the 911 dispatcher who helped him while he was lost and injured in the woods for hours.
Dec. 31 is a day Joe Molnar won’t soon forget. It was just 27 degrees when he decided to go hunting in the rural town of Washington.
Just after 10 a.m. that day, while in a tree stand, his safety harness broke and he fell 25 feet to the icy ground below.
He couldn’t walk, but Molnar managed to call for help after dragging himself 200 feet back to his truck.
It took him an hour to go the short distance thanks to a shattered ankle, dislocated elbow, and a fractured knee.
"The screams at that point from you were, I was cringing just going ‘oh my God, this poor guy’ and wishing I could do more,” said Nicolette Crowe, the Litchfield County dispatcher who was on the phone with Molnar.
The pair got to meet in person nearly five months after the incident.
"Please give my heartfelt thank you for everyone because there were a lot of first responders looking for me that day,” Molnar said to Crowe on Tuesday.
She kept Molnar on the phone, trying to reassure him that help was on the way.
Despite Molnar’s excruciating pain, and the fact that he was suffering from hypothermia, the two managed to exchange a few jokes.
“I talked to him about hunting. I talked to him about my dog. I talked to him about anything we could possibly think of just to keep his mind off what was going on,” Crowe said.
After being flown to the hospital, Molnar spent the next week there undergoing several surgeries.
As he continues to recover, Molnar said he'll always remember Crowe’s calming presence on one of the worst days of his life.
Molnar has a long road ahead of him, including rehab and maybe even another surgery.
Despite all of this, he says it will not stop him from hunting.
To hear the full 911 call, click here.
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