The luckiest guy in Colchester County

Harry Sullivan
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Bass Rivers Stuart Mills recovering from injuries sustained in toll booth crash

The luckiest guy in Colchester County

HALIFAX - Just call him lucky.
Banged and bruised and lying in a hospital bed with several broken ribs, some severe cuts and generally feeling "quite sore," Stuart (Stu) Mills is nonetheless willing to stack his good fortune up against just about anybody.
"I'm feeling very lucky," the 48-year-old Bass River resident said from his bed in the QEII hospital Tuesday afternoon.
"Right now I'm probably the luckiest guy in Colchester County."
And who could argue?
Mills is the commissionaire who was working at the Cobequid Pass Monday morning when a five tonne-truck came screaming in and slammed into his toll booth.
It took emergency crews about 40 minutes to free him from the wreckage before he was airlifted to Halifax. But other than being held at the hospital for more testing to determine whether he has internal bruising, Mills said he expects to be released today.
"I broke three ribs," he said, adding he also has some "serious lacerations and some not so serious," a badly banged up hand which medical staff initially thought was broken and other bruising. But speaking by telephone from his hospital bed, Mills was in excellent spirits and more than happy to be still alive.
He recalls nothing of the actual crash, just the events leading up to it.
"We were starting lunch (shifts) ... and I can remember somebody saying, and a few adjectives added, that that guy was moving really fast and apparently there were a couple of vehicles in my lane," he said, recalling the moment as it had been told to him by others at the scene.
"I told them they had to move their cars, I guess, I don't remember any of this. And then I looked up and I remember the front of the truck coming through the toll booth. As soon as I saw the truck coming through the toll booth I blacked out 'til I came to again (about 45 minutes later)," he said.
"When I looked up when I came to I was probably about four feet away from the wheel of the truck."
Mills is married with two daughters, Angela, 27, and Crystal 26. He said his wife Sheila heard initial reports about the accident on the news and when she received a call from a co-worker saying he had been involved in a bad accident "she sort of figured the worst."
"So she was quite happy to find out I was I still on the right side of the grass."
Mills has worked as a full-time commissionaire at the toll booth for more than four years and before that on a part time basis since 1999.
He is heavily involved in sports within Truro, including serving as vice-president of Truro Minor Lacrosse.
In that capacity, Mills said those who know him well know him as a "pretty intense guy that way."
And if there is an aspect of his life that will change following the accident, it will mean being "a little more happy-go-lucky, I guess," Mills said.
"Maybe it's not quite so necessary to be so intense."

Organizations: QEII hospital

Geographic location: Colchester County, HALIFAX, Bass River

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Recent comments

  • WMCR
    January 18, 2010 - 10:14

    I'm not an English teacher, but shouldn't Colchester County be capitalized in this titile????

  • V
    January 18, 2010 - 10:12

    Great story --- and a very lucky man indeed! Hope you are home and healing soon Stuart!

    I have been reading the past couple days, and still no reason given as to why this truck rammed the booth to start with (or did I miss that part)?

  • Jason
    January 18, 2010 - 10:11

    Wow.. Now go get yourself a lottery ticket!! My best wishes to you and your family.

  • FFC and
    January 18, 2010 - 10:11

    Stu we took a vote and decided to change your name from SPARKY to a CAT OF NINE LIVES .

  • Highwayman
    January 18, 2010 - 10:11

    A story about how a man nearly had his number called and how its going to make him a little more easy going in life, and we are concerned with spelling in a small town newspaper. Some people really need to upsize their underwear because it's obvious the ones they are wearing are too tight. Stress is the leading killer of people on every continent. Let it go!!

  • frog
    January 18, 2010 - 10:10

    WMCR-you must be an angry person to pick up a misspelling on such a heroic story. Maybe you should seek some help. For us that use this discussion form to talk about positiveness and negatives, you really take the cake. Us regular users should come up with an award at the end of every week called NIMROD of the WEEK . You have my vote. P.S., sorry if i had any spellings wrong!

  • WMCR
    January 18, 2010 - 10:09

    Frog and others:
    Of course it is obvious that this man's story is a wonderful one. I also think that place he lives happens to be a nice one as well and am sure the Truro Daily News and all those who live here, wants everyone to know when they read about such great events that we are not the uneducated hicks that some (Frog) make us out to be. Small town doesn't have to mean stupid.

  • Teddybear
    January 18, 2010 - 09:51

    Your while outlook on life changes when you have looked the Angel of Death in the eyes and lived to tell about it. This just goes to show that we never know when our time is up. Split seconds can change our lives forever and make us appreciate the simple things in life and those close to us. As Solemon said, Everything becomes meaningless that we have strived and worked for all of our lives. Material things suddenly don't mean so much anymore and we take time to listen to the birds sing and admire the beauty around us.

  • Andrea
    January 18, 2010 - 09:50

    Is the story about where he is from or the fact he survived?If people who read this article are going to assume that people from small towns are hicks, all because of a lack of capitalization on the county, well then they are pretty pathetic now aren''t they to make that kind of leap.Mistakes happen in novels, magazines, and newspapers all the time. Commend the man on surviving and being able to walk, not an error on where he was from.If it is so obvious, then say it.Somethings are meant to be observed and not said.

  • abby
    January 18, 2010 - 09:46

    Right on frog!!! coudn,t just be happy that a man had just missed dreath by a hair.GEEEZ LOUISE!!!!! get a life! Stu don,t know you, but so happy for you and your family.Great story of luck.

  • ns girl
    January 18, 2010 - 09:37

    I agree w/ WMCR...this paper has the worst spell checker--- there's always a spelling error. Leave WMCR alone! I'm glad someone else notices!