Flat tire changes man's life in an instant - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Flat tire changes man's life in an instant

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MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - A Memphis father of two is making a courageous recovery after his life was changed in an instant. It could happen to anyone – one minute he was changing a tire, and next he was clinging for his life.

"You don't expect to see nobody walk on water. You don't expect to see anybody just split down the middle," said Michael Owens who lost his legs in an accident. "I didn't expect to see the next day either."

Owens, 28, pulled over to fix a flat in early March. He pulled off of Winchester Road, and called a friend to watch out for him while he changed the tire.

A passing car slammed into his friend's truck pinning Owens' legs between the bumper and the ground.

"When the crash happened, something whispered, said, 'There's a change. You're going to lose your legs,'" said Owens. "The only thing I was thinking about is just trying to survive. I got two daughters I want to keep seeing."

When doctors at The Med saw Michael's injuries their only option was to amputate both of his legs.

"Ain't no sense in rewinding, because you rewind and you see yourself almost die," said Owens.

Now, two months after the crash Owens spends three to four hours a day suiting up and learning to walk again with prosthetics.

"This is a real process every day," he said. "These are just the beginning stages. So, don't get used to 'y'all' being taller than me. Because I was 6'1''. A very handsome 6'1"."

Every step of the way he inspires those around him.

"When we came in, we had no idea whether we were going to see him again," said Owens' aunt Tina Martin. "It's something you can't explain. It's a wonderful feeling, and it lets you know that miracles still happen."

Martin visits him daily. She said Owens' faith and resilience keeps them all moving forward.

"It takes a lot of inner strength to get where he is," she said.

Owens is making his road to recovery faster than expected. He took his first steps less than six weeks after the accident.

"That first step it was crazy," said Owens. "I was happy. I was like I've been sitting down on my butt for over a month. I 'ain't' been able to do nothing."

Family and friends are doing what they can in helping with medical bills mounting.

"I can't quote you a price, per se, but it's already in six figures," said Martin.

Owens does not have health insurance or a job. He has no way to pay for the costs of healing and rehab.

"It's just a long, long list of things that 'has' to be done, and we've got to find some kind of way to make it happen," said Martin.

Michael finds comfort in his church.

"I ain't above the bar. I can't walk on water, but with faith you can," said Owens.

Unable to physically attend services, Michael logs on to New Direction's virtual church from his hospital bed.

"Able to see everything live," said Owens. "I can send them messages. 'I love y'all' and get 'I love you, too' about 3,000 times."

Through his laptop, he asks for prayers and thanks God for the steps he has taken.

"Jesus is real. When I look at everybody I see a part of God smiling," said Owens.

He has a smile with each step, and faith that somehow this is all a part of a much bigger plan.

"It's just a day in the process now, we going to get it cracking," said Owens. "It's just another page, another chapter in my life, got to keep going, keep living."

The Owens' family needs the community's help from this accident that could happen to anybody. They said no donation is too small. Click here to donate.

He will likely head home on May 16, but right now friends and family are working to make his father's home handicap accessible.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV . All rights reserved.

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