Nelson Thomas, who was the victim in a car crash that led to the heroic rescue by Minnesota Vikings wide receiver K.J. Osborn and three others, thanked them in a tweet on Tuesday.
Thomas posted several photos of his horrific injuries on social media and thanked everyone who pulled him from a burning car in Austin, Texas.
“I was involved in a car accident. I want to thank kJ: @kj_osborn_ @nfl @vikings for being on the scene and filming my rescue. I am forever grateful to Abdulmejied Hairedin: @_abdu6435, Rita: @Afri_qveen, and Arthur: @Arthur_1er.
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“For pulling me out of a burning vehicle, risking their own lives to save mine. Words can’t explain how grateful I am to be alive. God is truly great and he has you in his hands no matter who you are. I’m in high spirits and getting stronger.
“This will be a long road to recovery but to my fans, friends and family please keep me in your prayers.”
Thomas was a former contestant on MTV’s “The Challenge” and was in the burning vehicle when Osborn and his Uber driver, Abdulmejied, pulled over to see if they could help. They joined Rita and Arthur, who were on the scene as well.
Osborn explained to “Fox & Friends” last week what was happening.
VIKINGS’ KJ OSBORN RECALLS HEROIC EFFORT TO SAVE MAN FROM BURNING CAR: ‘DEFINITELY A CRAZY SITUATION’
“Initially I started running to the fire with Abdul and then I started thinking for a second. This car could blow up. We’re not sure what could happen with this vehicle. But my Uber driver, Abdul, we went right up to the car, he opened the passenger door,” Osborn explained. “He was seeing if the driver was OK. We’re trying to see if he was alive and moving and things like that. And eventually we’re moving toward the car and back from the car because we don’t know if it would bust into more flames.
“Eventually the driver was able to muster enough strength to move his upper body to the passenger seat and kind of be able to pull his arms out and ask for help. And that’s when we all went down and we were able to pull him out. But we were still close to the car and we didn’t know whether it was going to blow up. I was able to pick him up and we were able to carry him 10-15 yards and we were able to get him out of that situation.
“Definitely a crazy situation. As I said in my post, God is real and the timing was real for all of it. I would’ve never been in Austin, Texas, had my trainer not moved down here. I missed my first Uber and I was in my second Uber. The timing of it was crazy. Happy I was able to be there.”
Osborn cited his dream of getting into the Secret Service or FBI as the reason why he jumped into action in the first place. He said the bravery and courage of those around him strengthened his resolve at that moment.
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“Football didn’t matter then,” he said. “We were trying to save a man’s life.”