Athens County man recalls the moment a car plowed through a group of protesters

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COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Bill Burke drove to Charlottesville, Virginia from Athens County, Ohio on Saturday to be a part of the counter-protest to defend what he believes. He never wanted to get violent and never thought this trip would almost cost him his life.

It was something Burke says he barely saw coming.

“I turned around and I think could hear, I could hear a car accelerating,” said Burke.

One minute he was walking with a group of counter-protesters and a few seconds later, he was in the middle of a chaotic scene that left him with stitches and staples in his head. For now, he relies on a cane to help him walk.

“I turned around, I seen somebody flying into me. I could hear the loud, loud crash, it was like right beside me where he hit the other car, and I was laying there,” Burke said. “A girl said you got to hold your head you’re bleeding all over the place you got to hold your head, you got to hold your head shut.”

He said he was going in and out of consciousness and is not sure of what happened.

He had no idea a car had hit him.

His wife said says Bill is struggling to remember and could be suffering from a concussion.

There is one moment that he says he can’t forget.

“There was a girl right beside me and they were doing CPR on her, and every time they were doing chest compressions on her I could feel it. I could feel her chest compressions. They were moving me. That’s when I realized something really, really, really bad happened and it wasn’t just me.”

He says that if he could do it all over again he would.

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