King of the hill

By on January 10, 2018

Sawyer, age 12, has conquered his fear of Bomberger Hill, as seen in this Dennis Bicksler photo that ran on last week’s front page.

Young sledder conquers his fears after serious accident

When Sawyer Martin’s parents, Theresa and Chris, saw the photo on the front page of last week’s Record Express of their son sledding on Bomberger Hill, they had a flashback.

Climbing a mountain, or a hill, can be an analogy for facing one’s fear. For some, it’s literal.

When he was four years old, Sawyer was sledding on that same hill when he had a violent collision with another sledder. Shortly after, his eye had swollen shut and turned black and blue. He grew sick and was unable to speak. His parents, recognizing the concussion symptoms, rushed him to the Heart of Lancaster Medical Center in Lititz. From there, he was sent to Hershey Medical Center, where MRIs and X-rays determined he had fractured his skull above and below the left eye. Fortunately, surgery was not necessary and he eventually recovered after a lot of rest.

Sawyer, age 4, maintained a brave face despite his stay in the hospital for a fractured skull and concussion.

After that experience, Sawyer was understandably hesitant to sled again. After a few years, he decided to try some smaller hills, and with some motivation from his brother Brigham, he decided to return to Bomberger Hill.

They say climbing a mountain is like a facing a fear because it’s worth it for the view. In this case, it’s the ride, not the view, that makes it worthwhile.

Aubree Fahringer is a staff reporter for the Record Express and can be reached at


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