Jerry Nadeau Details His Career-Ending AccidentMar 17, 2022
let's cut to the chase so the
accidentso you're racing things in the army car not going so well the cars got good i loved the army because my dad my dad was an army guy he did it with ryan pemberton yeah but things are your cars are pretty good yeah well we're just yeah we built this team and it's like we're just the first three four races weren't the best yeah but then all of a sudden uh texas and then we're going to go to charlotte and try we're great we're going to richmond well yeah richmond we were california we finished 10 or 11 and we're making good progress um starting to see it starting to see the potential yeah and then we finished fourth in Texas yeah , yeah, yeah, you're in the top five, now that's legit. and then boom um i i i i literally don't remember anything about the day i remember i feel like i kind of remember waking up in the morning i had my oatmeal and toast and i don't remember how or what or what happened i watch the video and it's like holy what happened it was so quick I mean dude it was like I hit ice yeah I don't.
I know, I mean, I know I was fast, I know I was good, I think it was me and Rusty Wallace and we passed him, we had more laps than him and I remember Ryan telling me that he communicated with him. I put tires on and I didn't put tires on it just had a line I don't know maybe I was too high maybe I hit the soft spot I don't know or the marbles happened and then you crashed and what happened inside the car is from when I uh who is the guy that passed uh nascar the main guy the main guy in nascar he did all the crash damage but he contacted me anyway i went to the nascar place and he gave me my stuff and he showed me this spike and i think they were 128 g twice in a millisecond so it hit totally flush but it hit a degree more back so it was 128 128 you know what I mean so you just know for everybody at home I mean his car turn and hit the driver side yeah against the wall and turn a right one or two so you're hitting the driver side at 128 g and you wouldn't think you wouldn't think that in that spot because you're only doing like maybe 120 maybe maybe I don't know 120 yes maybe on that shift um but again they didn't have there was no barre um, the car crashed, um, everything did its job, the only thing I remember, um, when I talked to the cook, who made my seats, is that I like to tilt my head going into the curve and I couldn't do that with my car, so I cut myself. headrest of my left side headrest you cut it nice i cut all the padding i put in because i like it you know when you go in a turn you like the head a little bit and i cut the headrest and so i can my head so when i got to the drivers side , all the padding was gone, okay, wait, let me go back, tell me, when did you do that?
When did you do that? and the first day I got no we went there with the new car so I got in the car and said I've tested it I think in practice and that weekend yeah so that weekend you cut the yeah the padding so it's usually that big yeah well it was probably that big yeah yeah the left side yeah and I hit myself in the side yeah yeah but no one had no no one could tell , because you know what kind of um, how did that contribute to your injuries, well, it certainly didn't help, no, it didn't help, I mean, I don't know if that was it, but obviously I broke, I think I broke four or five ribs, I fractured a scapula, a fractured sternum, had a punctured lung. and he had a feeding tube i cant believe you had all those injuries from that
accidenti know yeah i mean it was a real hit but its richmond its a short track and i had the butler build seats they are they are good seats seats yeah it's crazy yeah yeah that's right you could get I don't remember some Something like that I woke up three weeks later so three weeks you woke up three weeks later I mean what would you do ?
What do you remember about that? In any case, I think the wheelchair I remember you know it's a funny story. that's funny but i think he was more in awe why there were so many people working and moving the nurses, yeah i was like dammit stop moving stop making noise stop this. I remember the nurses putting me in a wheelchair and taking me to the shower don't get it don't get it don't get it wrong but showering to cleanse myself of course and I didn't I wasn't talking I was just memorizing just mesmerizing increasing what I It's happening right now in my life and I remember seeing my car on TV so you watch a race and you see it oh yeah and it's you then you're remember all of this to bits yeah yeah like I think I was at the richmond hospital because i was doing all the rehab there i was there for uh uh god it seems i dont know feels like forever but maybe two three four weeks maybe and then they took me out of there and brought me charlotte in your rehab is it you um those weren't good times no i was so upset because i remember ladies like what's your address what's your phone number yeah how can you not know your phone number? it was bugging me right away yeah it was bugging me i was pulling my hair trying to say where come on where is this information? i know he got out of his uh he noticed and saw his car i don't know what it's about like put the car on a tv and you're looking at your car and someone else and i don't remember.
Have you been told who is trying to make sense of this at the time or is there anyone? Oing this is what happened
jerryyou were in a bad accident you've been in a coma for three weeks like who's helping you not really but i remember dr petty i love dr petty he told me he killed me he brought me he brought me down and i think it's just he cared so much about me as a person he said
jerryi love you like a son uh i think you should pick something else how early when when did he do that?
That was like from God like yeah when I woke up when I remember he was holding my hand like and even when I'm looking at him I couldn't say why my arm feels weird I couldn't feel this I couldn't feel it it was tingling like a million from mosquitoes my whole left side is like this today and it's like it didn't change but um oh you still tingle oh yeah yeah oh it really gets cold it gets worse at night when at night I can snuggle so much on my left side just because and I was told which is because the blood flow is going very fast on the right side on this one but it's very slow on this side so it cools down it doesn't move so I'm a little I'm a little bit like mashed potatoes like mashed potatoes compared to my self was connected I was ready to return before my accident, yes, but well, I mean I mean, me and I'm not, I've seen you several times since that day and do you remember I called you, yes, when I told you: hey, you have work p For me, yes, and you said that you needed to be seen, that you needed to get out, but I feel that you know that, since I have seen you several times since that day and I feel that you have progressively improved yes I think I'm better I think I'm talking better I think my my uh I'm more alert yeah uh I think my wife is not that interesting that accident and I mean the education you get you know as an individual about the brain and how it all works well because you've been going through rehab.
You're getting oh You're asking a million questions. As we can? How do we fix this? How do I improve that? much more than I ever did and but isn't it interesting or quite amazing that even years later you're still getting better and that's what is a little weird when I talked to Dr. Petty or Dr. Orteski he was my brain major? doctor told me after two years after his head injury that two years is what he has yeah I don't know if that's true because now I'm speaking much better than ever I know so I know or something Maybe it's because I haven't seen anyone we'll explain that though no no I don't know how to explain it I'll say I think that's what I would expect too once I get to a certain point plateau and that's what you are , that is the new version of you, yes, move forward and you learn to adapt and accept and move to the right, but it seems to me that yes several times years ago talking to you I saw you struggle and I saw you know that I saw you frustrated and now as when I saw you the other day at the costco I was like damn and I told you even you look cool um you know you wouldn't sound cool I know you know well that a lot of what I think about a lot of it is because I don't see anyone I sure am so homely so i'm just saying your your thinking your thoughts are fine you're putting things together you're working ionando just saying this overall overall function you seem to be improving or have gradually improved over a decade which is pretty remarkable because i've been with my wife for almost 10 years so i have to give her a little bit of credit she's amazing there you go, she's so tough, she's amazing, i love my kids and yes i mean that's us.
I'm talking about your improvements but as I've realized in the two years since this accident is you even tr I want to run again yeah I mean yeah take us through this because I like that you've changed now no only physically, but as if it had affected your brain. I have to assume that there are changes in you and who you are as a person. What were those changes and how are you navigating the next two years? Well obviously Jay Fry is so amazing. optimistic push. You know you are our driver. jerry petty on this side of my head no way yeah no no i'm doing it one more hit one more you're done and I had kids my natalie was just born as yeah and it's like oh god you know I'm hardest thing in my life, i fought, i fought because i always thought i had dreams like to come back and be awesome, like oh my gosh, like you never miss your step, okay guys i know a little bit about cars so believe it.
Me when I tell you tire professionals are the real deal they have great people great service and and can take care of all your auto maintenance needs plus sponsor this show so you know they have great taste in podcasts so Check out the tire pros, follow them on Facebook, and tell them I sent them.
If you have any copyright issue, please Contact