VERNDALE, Minn. — Months after suffering third-degree burns from a gas tank explosion on his tractor, A Verndale, Minn., farmer has finally returned home from the hospital.
But Lyle Broughton still has a long way to go in his recovery.
The accident was the latest setback for the Broughtons, and a family friend is trying to help out with a fundraiser.
Broughton was driving his tractor July 25 when the gas tank exploded, according to the GoFundMe page. He jumped down to put out the flames on his body, and rolled into the river to help with the pain. After seeing the smoke from the tractor, his wife, Eileen, rushed outside and found him in the river, the page said.
Broughton had heavy third-degree burns on his hands, arms, face and back.
Both Lyle and Eileen work on their farm hay baling and with their horses and cattle. Lyle is also a farrier, according to the page.
With a goal of $50,000 and $13,856 as of Sept. 23, the funds are to support the Broughtons in paying bills, getting help on the farm and travel expenses, according to the page.
The accident comes only about one year after they lost their log cabin, which Lyle and Eileen are still working on rebuilding, according to the page. They also lost their son Aaron shortly after when a trench collapsed on him while building a new home close to his parents.
“I am devastated. I've been a friend of the family for the past 13 years and I feel that they could really use help right now," said Nancy Lam, organizer and friend of the Broughtons in an update on the page. "They are the type of people who are always willing to help others and now they need help. Prayers are especially important."
Updates on the page explain that Broughton had skin graft surgery on his hands and arms, with future surgeries to come. He had pneumonia in his lungs, kidneys not functioning properly, high blood pressure and a fungal infection on his arm. He also had a tube inserted to help him with his breathing.
On Sept. 23, Houghton was released from the Hennepin County Burn Center and returned home, according to the page.
"He’s starting occupational and physical therapies this week after careful evaluation of his condition," Lam wrote.
To support the Broughton family, visit www.gofundme.com/f/farmer-burned-from-tractor-blowing-up?.