J&P Staffer Provides Update on Condition After Accident

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J&P Staffer Provides Update on Condition After Accident

Editor’s Note: Back in November, we introduced you to Joe Cowan, J&P Cycles Network Administrator. At the time of the blog being published, Joe was in transition from our Iowa headquarters to Daytona Superstore. Unfortunately, shortly after arriving in Florida, Joe was involved in an accident. He shared his story with readers. What follows is an update on how he’s been.

Joe's ArmSince my motorcycle accident, back on November 20, 2013, I have come a long way. After wrist and shoulder surgeries, and the cable holding my clavicle slipping a week after surgery, my arm was strapped to my side for almost nine weeks. Now my clavicle looks like a bump on my shoulder, but the doctor says my shoulder is fully functional despite the slip. When asked if I wanted him to go back in and adjust it, I said no thanks. It’s purely cosmetic at this point.

With my shoulder immobilized for an extended period of time, the joints and ligaments were tight and short. My muscles were so weak, I could not hold a glass of water or raise my hand to my face, so I started therapy. I was only able to go therapy four times because I had to pay for two therapist each time I went: one for my wrist and one for the shoulder. The cost was too much to continue. They did give me all the exercises on paper I needed to do, so now I do all the ongoing exercises at home. My wrist is tight sometimes, but is fully functional. My shoulder has recovered, also. Now I can almost lift my arm all the way up over my head.

Some days are better than others when it comes to the pain. I seem to take one step forward and two steps back. It’s difficult because I find myself saying, “It was better yesterday.”  I will say, having my wife there with me through the many sleepless weeks (not nights) in ongoing pain has been more than I could have ever asked for. I was mentally weak from the pain and sleeplessness, but she carried me though it all and has been my left hand for a long time.  A special thank you goes out to her.

Joe's bike ready for its new homeI did finally get the bike all fixed up. There were just a few broken accessories, such as the headlamp, break lever, and throttle twist.  I waited until I could fix it myself. When it came time to ride it, I found myself a little weak to pull the manual clutch in. I worked on it for another week until I felt confident enough to go riding. As I went around curves it was strange, I could remember the feeling of going down on the bike.  After riding the bike a few more times and still having the feeling I had when crashing, I knew it was time to sell the bike even though the thrill of riding was still there.  I’ve ridden other bikes since the crash and not had the same feeling.

I easily found a buyer for my bike. In fact, the guy came to the door  and handed me cash without looking close at it and not even hearing it run. I watched as he loaded up the bike onto his truck, latch it down, and drive all the way out of sight before I went back inside.  It was a good bike, and now it’s not mine anymore.  Needless to say, I was a bit grumpy for the rest of the night.

I do want to get another bike and plan on doing so –  maybe a ’93-’98 Dyna Super Glide.  When I do get a chance to ride, I always wear full gear. I haven’t changed the way I ride, but I don’t ride on wet days.  I can’t do a dead press over my head yet, but who needs to do that to go riding?



By |2015-04-15T13:24:00+00:00May 1st, 2014|Categories: Editorial/Commentary Articles, News/Events Articles|12 Comments

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  1. michaeljackson488@yahoo.com May 17, 2014 at 5:25 am

    I hit a deer in 2007 went thru what your doing. I rode my bike home a year later. Then did some changes on my bike. JP parts old school look. Some of the thrill was gone when I ride but that’s riding. Going down was a life changer but made me wiser I’m not scared of ride just more alert as for pain its around but I’m used to a slight discomfort. I did have the best leathers and boots gloves. Save my ass. Slide on road about 100 feet. Just broken arm shoulder. No road rash. Lots of bruiss I still love my Harley. The sound wind and shaking. That’s what old Harleys are about.

  2. Lee Urbainzick May 17, 2014 at 5:12 am

    Hang in there Joe:
    It’s been nearly three years since I hit a deer and crashed. When I was going through the pain and torture of physical therapy I kept reminding myself that the pain was a reminder of how lucky I was to be alive. When I was on some of the first rides after the accident I was hyper-aware of the risks but it has settled and now I enjoy riding more than ever.

  3. Michael Niese May 17, 2014 at 12:15 am

    Went through something similar 20 years ago.
    Slid my ’80 sporty into the curb due to sand on the road, flipped the bike w/me holding on and landed on my shoulder w/ bike landing forks first beside my head.

    Instead of a cable, they shot a screw into my clavicle.
    Months of my right arm strapped to my chest in the middle of summer is not fun(Imagine heat rash so bad my arm was stuck to my chest). They removed the screw, and my clavicle crept up.

    Now have bone spurs in shoulder and mebbe Arthritis. Still riding though w/Road King.

  4. Daz May 16, 2014 at 10:51 pm

    BE GRATEFUL YOU ARE ALIVE! Everything else will heal in due time, hopefully and God Bless that you can still ride. Some are not as fortunate and they are miserable! I know a couple men that due to their injuries are not able to ride and a few died “not to their falt, but to the aholes who are yacking on their cell’s or texting. Hopefully your rubber will stay down now, God Bless!

  5. MARK EBERT May 16, 2014 at 5:49 pm


  6. Jeff Truck May 16, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Hey Joe glad to hear your doing better,I don’t know if they used any scerws in your wrist or shoulder,but if your thinking about a dyna glide or any other harley for that matter you might want to check with your doctor and make sure they used red Loctite on them.LOL Take Care

  7. John Paskey May 16, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    Hello Joe, good to hear your on the mend and have a good woman to walk alongside you. God bless brother and hope to see you on the road.

  8. Steve Douglas May 16, 2014 at 3:20 pm

    Glad to hear your long road to recovery is improved. After that I don’t know if I could ride again. What type of gear were you wearing at time if you don’t mind me asking? Is there replacement gear you would wear after the experience?



  9. Rodney B. May 16, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    Been on real horses and “iron” horses since I was a kid (‘bout 40 + yrs. saddles, street and dirt). And as cliché as it is, if you ride you will go down, so you get up, brush yourself off and climb back on. It’s good to hear you have basically recovered, Godspeed Joe, because as you and others know there is nothing like “getting in the wind”. Take Care!

  10. Deb Schuitema May 16, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Good luck and I’m thankful you are still with us. Sending prayers for total healing from Michigan!!

  11. Bobby Lewis May 1, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    My fender bender was a minor next to yours. Mine was 11/07/13 and I still feel the pain. No ER for me I toughed it out.
    Best wishes for you and your wife.
    A good woman is hard to beat.

  12. Jeff Johnson May 1, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Hey I have a nice 1996 fxd that I would Sale if interested contact. Me @ jjcrainhill [at] aol [dot] com.
    It has some miles on it but. Plenty left on it

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