Bryce Clarke had dived into his backyard pool dozens of times. On Aug. 26, 2001, he didn’t surface.
Instead, Bryce hit the bottom and broke his neck. He heard a loud crack and recalls instantly floating face down in the pool unable to move. His friends scrambled to get him out of the water and begin CPR and someone called 911.
While the ground ambulance was en route, first responders determined Bryce’s injuries were life-threatening and STARS was dispatched.
It still amazes Bryce that the helicopter landed on the lawn of his acreage near Sherwood Park. Several days later Bryce, who was working as a constable with the Edmonton Police Service, woke up in intensive care at University of Alberta Hospital to the grim news that the dive had left him quadriplegic. He was devastated.
“I was a 29-year-old vibrant guy and in one split second my life changed completely,” says Bryce, who remained working with EPS following his injury. Today, he serves as acting homicide detective in the historical homicide unit. The position fulfills a longtime dream of his.
Whenever he gets the chance, he shares his STARS story by volunteering at events. Most recently, he was proud to help us launch the 2015 STARS Lottery.
“Without question, if not for STARS I would not be here,” said Bryce. “These people are saving lives every day.”