My name is Lisa Gorder and my husband Shane & I have 6 beautiful children. On August 17, 2020 our life was changed forever. Brodie was a mischieveous, sweet little 8 year-old boy. He was a farm boy, a 4-Her, and a wrestler. He was raised on a ranch on the Yellowstone River, the shadow of his 2 older brothers and 2 older sisters, and the big brother to Greyson. Two weeks prior to the accident he had just shown his 1st 4-H animals at the fair. His favorite thing in the world was wrestling. He put on a singlet at the age of 3 and spent many hours on the wrestling mat and traveling to matches. In his short wrestling career he had won more medals and honors than many high school wrestlers. We are sure he was destined for greatness. On August 17th, we spent the day getting ready for school to start the following week and he went swimming with his grampa and big brother Brady below the house. He played with his 1 year old brother Greyson in his little pool on the deck and just before supper he was asked to go feed his pigs. A chore he had done dozens of times before. He had his own little 4-wheeler that he loved to ride. There was a constant hum around the farm as he ran down the driveway to gramma's house several times a day. What we didn't know, was that for some reason, he chose to take the full size ranch 4-wheeler. He was hungry and his plate was on the table waiting. A few short minutes later when he didn't return for supper, we knew that something was wrong. Shane went to look for him and a moment later burst through our front door with a lifeless child. He had found him pinned under the 4-wheeler. We performed CPR and at our local hospital, we thought that we had a miracle. He had a heart beat. We stood in the ER with our family as the life flight team told us all how very sick he was. They told my children and his grandparents to say goodbye just in case he didn't make the flight to Denver. I watched as they loaded the plane and I followed. I was able to sit next to him but only one of us was allowed to fly with him. I knelt next to the cot on the plane and I talked to him the entire flight. I sang every song I could think of that I had sung to him as a little boy. I told him I loved him, I prayed and he made the flight. It was early am the next day, the 18th that we landed in Denver. I kept thinking, "he made it here, he will make it". I met dozens of people, nurses and doctors. In the end, after hours of waiting in a small room while they worked on him and talked, a doctor walked in as I sat by myself. She said "I am sorry, but we do not think that Brodie's injuries are survivable". I asked what was wrong. They found no obvious injuries. He simply had not been able to breathe and had been without oxygen for too long. He was a strong little boy but he was no match for the weight of that ATV. His brain was swelling rapidly from oxygen loss that he had sustained.
As I looked at him I could not comprehend the damage. He still looked perfect, not a scratch on him. I do not understand and never will, what happened. So fast, so quickly, a few short minutes too long. My husband flew into Denver on the first flight he could. He arrived just moments after they told me that our little boy was "brain-dead". We had to say good bye.
I am now reminded about an accident that happened 6 years earlier with Brodie's older brother Brady. Our older son was 10 years old and had the same 4-wheeler roll on him in the corral and he had been wearing a helmet. Without that helmet we would have lost Brady on that day. Even with a helmet, he shattered his orbit of his eye and broke his nose in that accident. Brady's injuries were horrific and obvious to look at but with Brodie there were no signs that he had even been hurt. I know now that my "worries" about my children will never be taken lightly, but I also know that this accident that took Brodie's life could have been prevented. He never should have been on that big machine.
I never want another parent to go through the pain of the loss of child. I cannot replace that beautiful smile and I still hear his laughter. Our home is so quiet and we will forever ache for that smile and his silly ways. We will always remember Brodie as an energetic, athletic little boy who simply loved life. He was always whistling and telling jokes. We loved our Brodie so very much.
Please everyone cherish your children. Do not let them on a full size 4-wheeler. Our children knew how to ride safely, had been told repeatedly to be careful. But, accidents happen and they are no match for the weight of an ATV. As I think about it, neither am I.
We depended daily on that machine for work on our ranch but it has not ran since that day and actually won't start. I am grateful that it hasn't. It will never be put to work on our ranch again.
It has only been two short months since we have lost Brodie. I wish I would have seen this website before. I cannot believe how many beautiful children are gone because of this same horrible tragedy.
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