On Dec. 4, Greg Mady stepped out of his postal van near 127th Avenue and 125th Street in Edmonton to make a delivery and was hit by a passing SUV.
Police later released a grainy surveillance video that shows what is thought to be the SUV involved. The vehicle paused briefly before speeding away.
Connor Adams and a friend were driving a couple of cars behind the SUV.
“I looked up, and I just kind of saw him swerve around the Canada Post vehicle and then abruptly it kind of looked like it hit something. It kind of moved, shifted — and then kept going,” Adams said.
Adams and his friend stopped their car. They saw Mady lying in the road.
While his friend ran down the street after the SUV, Adams ran to Mady, who was screaming.
CN police were on the scene within a couple of minutes, Adams said. Firefighters arrived next.
By that time, a crowd had gathered, and bystanders had wrapped Mady in blankets.
Adams watched as emergency personnel cut open Mady’s pant legs to access his injuries — a broken knee and four compound leg fractures.
“Did that happen in the street?” Mady asked Adams on Wednesday, during their meeting. “I thought that happened in the ambulance. Oh, wow. Learn something new every day.”
‘I remember getting out of my vehicle, turning, and then just seeing black’
Mady's memory of the crash is foggy, so he had many questions for Adams.
“What was the person who hit me doing?” he asked.
“He swerved past you and didn’t even slow down at all,” Adams told him.
“They hit my work vehicle too, right?” Mad asked.
“Yeah, they side scraped it. They took your mirror off and the whole front end was scraped. He didn’t even slow down at all.”
The hit and run happened along Mady’s usual delivery route, in a spot where he often stopped. He said he quickly got used to seeing oncoming cars swerve around his work vehicle.
“I thought I’d be delivering mail and I’d turn around and see someone just smash into the back of my truck one day,” he said.
But when the crash happened, he didn’t see it coming.
“I remember getting out of my vehicle, turning, and then just seeing black,” Mady said. “Then I remember waking up in agonizing pain and people telling me not to move.”
‘Running was the legitimate thing’
Mady has spent much of the past three months lying on his couch, catching up on Netflix while his bones healed. He’s now working to rebuild his leg muscles and is a little self-conscious about how slow he walks. He hopes to be back at work in some capacity in April.
He said he’s spent a lot of time asking himself what he would have done had he been the driver rather than the person hit.
“I might run, because it’s fight or flight, right?” he said. “They say that 90 per cent of hit and runs are solved within a week because the person runs and once the adrenaline’s goes down they’re just like, ‘Holy crap, I have to go in and ‘fess up.’”
“I think running is a legitimate thing — never coming back though, afterwards, is the hard thing to swallow … and the only part that I have to continue to get over.”
Adams seems equally frustrated that the driver has not yet come forward.
“Just seeing someone in pain and helpless — how could you leave in that situation? It’s another human being lying on the ground that just had a terrible thing happen to him.”
Both Mady and Adams were also quick to commend the many people who did stop — the crowd that Adams said gathered around to help, to call the ambulance, to try chasing down the SUV.
And they remain hopeful the driver will one day have a change of heart.
“If you show up when you’re 50, that would be cool,” said Mady when asked if he had anything to say to the driver.
“Maybe you’re 50 now, maybe show up when you’re 70 — I don’t know. But it would be really good for me personally to have that closure, and I think it would be for them as well.”
No arrest has been made. The SUV involved is believed to be a dark, older model Jeep Grand Cherokee with a roof rack and tinted windows.