THREE FORKS - A 16-year-old boy from Three Forks is being discharged from the hospital in Billings after being struck by a pickup truck on Jan. 18.
According to Gallatin County Sheriff Dan Springer, Kyle O’Rourke was hit by a 59-year-old man in an F150 truck around 6:30 p.m. outside of Three Forks Market. It is unknown if any other factors were involved.
The driver has been cited for careless driving, Springer said.
Kyle was riding his bike back from his grandmother’s house on a pedestrian path. Following the accident, he was taken to Billings for medical treatment.
“His left hip was completely dislocated and broken in a couple of places, so now he has plates and screws holding his hip back together and his pelvis in place,” Kyle’s father Rick O’Rourke said. “His left wrist was broken in half, so he has plates and screws on both bones in his left arm, by his wrist, and a concussion.”
The community of Three Forks rallied together to support Kyle and his family. The Three Forks School District, on January 21, had a spirit day to support him and raise money. Students were allowed to wear hats, they donated money, and in total raised $701 for his medical expenses.
Tyler Palmer, Kyle’s English teacher, recalls the day he found out that his student was headed to Billings and would be absent from class.
“For most of the day, I didn’t feel like teaching. I know him on a personal level, his hopes and dreams, and all of a sudden they’re not there and they’re on their way to Billings. It’s tough to take,” Palmer said.
While recovering, Kyle continued to ask his dad about his bike, wondering if it was salvageable. It was not, but family members are busy working on a new one for him.
“You’re bike’s trashed, but you’re here to see another day,” Rick told his son. “We can replace your bike, we can’t replace you.”
If you would like to donate, a link to his GoFundMe can be found here, or if you are near Three Forks, Rick O’Rourke says you can head to the Three Forks First Security Bank and donate via the Kyle O’Rourke Medical Fund Account.