ANDERSON COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - The day started like any other at the Lawrenceburg Quick Lube and Auto Repair shop, until 85-year-old Jim Shane brought his S.U.V. in to have it worked on.
"Well, he came in with a low tire. He thought it might have been a valve stem," recalled Ricky Simpson, who started working on the tire.
Simpson says Shane walked into the bay to watch, and that's when it all went wrong.
"I don't know what (happened) he just fell back," adding it all happened, "in just the blink of an eye."
Simpson says Shane fell through a small opening the net covering the pit, and landed about six-and-a-half feet below. That's when Simpson, a former Mercer County volunteer firefighter, sprang into action.
"I don't remember my feet touching the steps. I really don't," recalled the mechanic. "His neck was actually laying off of the concrete and the first thing I wanted to do was to stabilize his neck. He wasn't real, real responsive at first but he still had his eyes open."
Shane's wife, did not want to go on camera, but described the whole incident as an accident. She said her husband took a step back where there wasn't anything to step onto.
"It still doesn't seem real," stated Simpson.
Even more, Simpson said the safety net was in place and there are signs up around the shop warning customers not to walk into the bays.
Shane's wife said he has some serious injuries to the head, but he is alive and that was overwhelming news for the mechanic.
"I spoke with his wife a while ago," said Simpson, who hugged the woman, "I started crying. I'm just thankful the man's okay."
Simpson added that Shane's wife even returned to pick up the S.U.V. and attempted to pay for the work done.
Still, in the three years the shop has been open in Lawrenceburg, Simpson said nothing like this have ever happened, and he added, "I hope it never happens again."
Shane is in serious condition at U.K. Hospital and his wife said he has multiple staples to the back of his head.