Kirk Wall was enjoying a quiet Sunday on his ranch, a little slice of heaven tucked out of sight on the Canadian prairies.
The weekend peace was soon broken by a feisty new horse Kirk was getting to know.
While walking the horse, it suddenly wheeled and kicked Kirk in the side and sent him sailing several metres across the round pen.
On the outside it looked like little more than a bruise, but the damage inside Kirk’s body was severe, and his heart rate began to drop.
His wife Lynette drove him to his local hospital, where a CT scan was performed and a doctor immediately requested STARS.
“I said to him: ‘That bad, eh?’ ” recalled Kirk. “And he said: ‘Yeah, that bad.’ ”
His spleen was ruptured, and he needed a tertiary care hospital quickly.
Lynette also spoke with the doctor.
“He said: ‘Your husband is very, very, very sick, and he could . . . you know, it could be minutes,’” she said. ‘We hope STARS gets here in time.’”
“I remember the moment they came in with a stretcher and I instantly felt peace. At that moment all my sense of angst and panic disappeared..”
Kirk recovered well and went on to become an active ally for STARS in his community.
“I was really grateful that STARS was there for me.”