"If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?" is something every mother has said to their child at some point or another. It's the go-to response to "But [friend] is doing it!!"
It always seemed like a ridiculous thing to say. Why would my friends ever jump off a bridge? For Jordan Holgerson, a 16-year-old girl from Vancouver, Washington, that's exactly what happened. Holgerson and her friends were up on a bridge ledge having some fun.
“I went to the top of the bridge and my other – my friend ... she came up to the bridge with me,” Holgerson told KATU.
The teen was hyping herself to jump off the bridge into the river below, but she was nervous. She had seen a friend do it and wanted to try it herself, but it was a little scary to say the least. Holgerson was mentally preparing to jump when finally one of her friends took over.
“And so, she was counting down, but I didn’t think anything of it," she recalled. "And I was like, ‘No, don’t count down, like, I won’t go if you count down. I’m not ready.’ And then, she pushed me.”
Yep, one of Holgerson's friends pushed her off a bridge that was 60-feet above the ground straight into a river.
“In the air I was trying to push myself forward, so I could be like straight up and down [and] make my feet hit first but that definitely did not work,” the teen said.
Despite the fall, Holgerson said the adrenaline rush stopped her from feeling pain after the initial fall.
“And then an EMT that was off-duty helped me onto the rocks and just a whole bunch of people surrounding me were helping me, calming me down,” Holgerson said.
But just because she didn't feel the injuries, doesn't mean they didn't happen. Holgerson suffered five broken ribs, a bruised esophagus, an injured trachea, and got air trapped in the lining of her lungs.
"She is lucky she is not paralyzed or dead. We’re lucky she is going to recover and not have permanent injuries,” said Genelle Holgerson, Jordan's mother. “She is alert but in pain and is very tired."
As for the person who pushed Holgerson? The family knows her, and they're not happy. Apparently she was growing impatient with the teen's hesitation to jump.
“I’m very upset with her. She is an adult, and I’m sure she should have known better," Genelle Holgerson said. "She could have killed my daughter. She should probably just turn herself in, realize what she did wrong. This is not okay."
As of right now, the sheriff's office is looking into the incident but has not commented on the situation.
Holgerson says it will be about six weeks before she stops feeling the pain of her injuries, and six months before she can start playing sports again.
“I’m in a lot of pain without medication, I have five broken ribs, there’s air bubbles in my chest,” she told reporters. “And in the air, I think I might have fainted, when I hit the water I was definitely awake and aware. I don’t think I was really thinking about anything, I was just thinking, ‘Don’t land wrong or else you’ll have consequences.'”
WARNING: This video contains content which some viewers may find disturbing.