Man who survived head-on collision thanks firefighters who saved - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Man who survived head-on collision thanks firefighters who saved him

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YAKIMA, WA - Back on July 18, an Idaho man was hit head-on by a car on Highway 12 in Yakima. The woman who hit him died, but he is alive today because of a crew of Yakima firefighters.

72-year-old Robert Hoss and his wife Diana know how lucky he is to be alive, so they wanted to say thank you to the men who saved his life.

On Thursday morning, both of them went to Station #95 in Yakima with 'Thank You' balloons and a card.

Hoss, a traveling pharmacist, was on his way home to spend time with his family when he was hit head-on. The crash left him with four spinal fractures, a brain bleed, two broken collar bones, 16 broken ribs, and a broken breast plate.

Despite all that trauma, firefighters were able to get him into the ambulance without damaging his spinal cord.

"They are an incredible bunch that train very hard obviously," said Diana. "They knew exactly what to do and exactly how to do it. I greatly admire and respect them and they will always be deep in my heart." 

Robert did not feel comfortable going on camera. He still has a long way to go in his recovery. The brain injury will take the longest to heal, but some of the firefighters who helped save him say the progress he's made is surprising.

"Being on scene with them, we don't always know what happens to people after the call so it's nice to be able to see through the process of recovery and where he's at," said Jeff Charters, YFD firefighter.

"To sit across from somebody that you actually had an impact in their lives to be where they are at today is pretty humbling," said Jason Horton.

40-year-old Maria Jimenez was killed in the crash. Diana says her family is praying for the Jimenez family every day.

"As difficult as our worst day has been, it's nothing compared to what her family is going through."