Bradyite suffers broken back in fall

Cyril D. Hilliard, a retired Exxon engineer and a Brady resident for the past four years, suffered a broken back in an accident last Wednesday, Feb. 7 in Brownwood. He was helping fellow Bradyite, Joe Jordan, load a tractor onto a trailer when he fell. Hilliard, 78, was in ICU in Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo through Friday, but he was transferred to a rehab room on Saturday. He broke three vertebrae in the fall, one of which shattered. He said he had no feeling in his legs or toes. Doctors hope that he will recover from the paralysis in the near future. As of Monday, Hilliard did have feeling returning to his legs and was able to move them, according to friends. Raised in the Lohn area, Hilliard graduated with a mechanical engineering degree from Texas A&M. He and Jordan had loaded the tractor onto the trailer when Hilliard decided he would climb back aboard the trailer and place a piece of tape over the tractor’s exhaust in case of rain. When he placed a foot on a narrow metal tubing in order to reach the exhaust, it gave away and he fell, hitting the trailer then the ground which was about three feet away. He lost consciousness for about three-four minutes, Hilliard said Friday. He is in a rehabilitation room on the sixth floor of Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo.

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