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Farmer amputates his leg with a pocket knife to save his own life

A farmer in Nebraska was transferring corn when he accidentally stepped into a grain auger, forcing him to cut off his leg and seek help. HLN's Robin Meade explains.

Posted: May 15, 2019 6:00 PM
Updated: May 15, 2019 6:00 PM

A farmer in Nebraska was just trying to transfer some corn from one place to another when he accidentally stepped into a hole, the hole happened to be a grain auger.

Kurtis Kaser, 63, knew he had to act quick as his leg was getting pulled into the machine.

"I didn't know what to do and I didn't know how long I would keep my consciousness either, I about gave up but then I remembered I had my pocket knife," Kaser told CNN.

Kaser was at the farm by himself in Pender, located near the Iowa border, about three and a half weeks ago, when he had to make the split decision to cut off his leg.

"I didn't have a phone on me, I didn't know where it had gone, so I just started cutting with the knife," he said. "I knew I was done cutting because I felt a funny feeling, maybe it was a tendon I cut."

The farmer said shortly after, he proceeded to crawl towards his house using his elbows so he could reach a phone to call for help.

"I stopped for a little bit but I didn't want to stop for long in case I passed out, there was no way for me to get help, everyone was gone at the time, I just did what I had to do and they (first responders) got me in a helicopter," he said.

He was rushed to Bryan Medical Center and stayed there for about a week before transferring to Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals, where he underwent physical therapy.

"I was 45 minutes away from home when this happened, they were flying him away as I was arriving and I didn't get to see how he was doing before that," his wife, Lori, told CNN. "I am just glad he's here with us."

This isn't the first time Kaser has had a scare like this on the farm.

"These accidents happen all the time, when I was a sixth grader my other leg got stuck in a tractor, only my skin suffered that time," he said. "We're kind of used to this around here."

Kaser said he doesn't remember how long the whole ordeal lasted but when he returned home from the rehabilitation hospital on Friday, he was shocked to realize how far he had crawled.

"Everyone asks me why I am so calm about the situation and the truth is, when I was in Madonna (the rehabilitation hospital), I saw so many people who will probably never be able to walk again and I know I will be able to walk mildly normal, I'm fortunate."

His wife said they are now adjusting to the new lifestyle and within time they know everything will be back to normal. Once his leg is finished healing, he'll be fitted for a prosthetic and Kaser told CNN affiliate KETV that he'll be back to farming in no time.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 143879

Reported Deaths: 3676
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto952799
Hinds9520193
Harrison6801105
Jackson6043116
Rankin521996
Lee477094
Madison4595102
Forrest360685
Jones341687
Lauderdale3340142
Lafayette312047
Washington3043106
Lamar273849
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Lowndes227562
Neshoba2170113
Panola210347
Marshall206547
Leflore200389
Pontotoc192527
Monroe188877
Sunflower188754
Lincoln183664
Warren171757
Tate163049
Pike159958
Union159025
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Scott149429
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Simpson143153
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Newton102829
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Tallahatchie94727
Clarke88153
Clay86226
Jasper80421
Walthall73728
Montgomery71925
Calhoun71213
Stone71014
Carroll70114
Lawrence69814
Noxubee68917
Smith68616
Yalobusha67626
Perry63925
Tunica59519
Greene58222
Claiborne57416
Jefferson Davis53817
Humphreys52318
Amite50714
Benton48217
Quitman4766
Webster41614
Kemper40615
Wilkinson38422
Jefferson33511
Franklin3155
Sharkey30617
Choctaw3057
Issaquena1094
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 232506

Reported Deaths: 3457
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson30318491
Mobile19260356
Tuscaloosa12446148
Madison12204146
Montgomery12000232
Shelby971276
Baldwin819984
Lee750464
Morgan610447
Calhoun5964113
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Marshall579453
Houston503338
DeKalb460835
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Limestone400844
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Elmore391061
Lauderdale378353
Walker348096
Talladega334042
Colbert294341
Jackson290524
Blount275436
Autauga261739
Franklin243633
Coffee230315
Dale225454
Dallas219631
Russell21753
Chilton216137
Covington212333
Escambia194031
Tallapoosa168590
Chambers167548
Clarke154919
Pike154714
Marion133935
Winston122523
Lawrence121436
Geneva11678
Marengo116424
Barbour116010
Pickens114118
Bibb113617
Butler113341
Randolph99521
Cherokee98524
Hale91531
Washington89818
Clay88823
Henry8386
Fayette83116
Lowndes78529
Monroe76811
Cleburne74214
Crenshaw70030
Macon69420
Bullock68919
Conecuh66814
Perry6686
Wilcox62318
Lamar6227
Sumter55322
Choctaw41713
Greene39917
Coosa3064
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