Book bag credited for saving man's life in hit-and-run accident - Atlanta News, Weather, Traffic, and Sports | FOX 5

Book bag credited for saving man's life in hit-and-run accident

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COWETA COUNTY, Ga. -

A West Georgia Technical College student believes his book bag may have saved his life. The 20-year-old is recovering after being seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver.

Branden Whitehead says that he walks about 15 miles to and from school. He says that he was heading home Tuesday night on the shoulder of Gresian Trail when he was struck and thrown into the air.

"All of a sudden out of nowhere, I felt a sharp pain and I blacked out," said Whitehead. "When I woke up...I looked down at my arm -- there was a puddle of blood."

Whitehead suffered cuts, broken ribs and a punctured lung in the incident.

"I'm lucky enough to be alive right now," said Whitehead.

Whitehead says he was hospitalized for five days.  He doesn't have health insurance. He believes his bag, which was crammed with heavy books, may have saved his life by absorbing some of the impact.

"It's nearly 30 pounds... it's shredded," said Whitehead.

Whitehead wants the driver who struck him and left him in the street to come forward.

"They had to have known they hit me - or hit something...and they just kept on going," said Whitehead. "It could happen again, and somebody smaller could end up dying."

Whitehead says he'll be back at school on Tuesday, even if he has to make that two hour walk with broken ribs.

FOX 5 wasn't able to get a status on Coweta County investigators' case because of the holiday.

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