Brady Lowry, Kendell Cummings, August Harrison and Orrin Jackson attended Northwest College together in Cody, Wyoming, USA.
In addition to being college teammates, the four young men had been members of the Northwest College wrestling team and shared a very close friendship.
On Saturday, October 15, 2022, they decided to hike the South Fork in search of antlers in the Shoshone National Forest.
Brady, of Cedar City, Utah, said they were running late, but before turning back, he and his friends split up to continue looking for antlers. Suddenly, he saw a huge bear emerge from the willows.
As soon as he realized the bear was approaching, Brady commented that he had a chance to call Kendell. According to reports, the animal charged the Utah man and attacked him in the arm.
Shortly after the bear caught him, Kendell sprang into action, trying to distract the bear as best he could. When it refused to stop attacking, Brady said his brave friend kicked the animal, grabbing it by the hair and pulling it back with all his strength.
The friend’s efforts helped to drive the animal away; but almost immediately it turned around and began to chase him. In trying to save his teammate from being attacked by the giant bear, he ended up becoming its target.
Kendell of Evanston, Wyoming, said the bear wandered off after attacking him, and that’s when he started calling Brady. To his surprise, the bear wasn’t finished with him and charged at him one more time before disappearing.
At the time, the Wyoming resident said he had suffered several head and body injuries. But the only thing on his mind was the safety of his friend.
Meanwhile, Brady, who said he was very worried about his rescuer, managed to make it up the hill to find the cell service and call 911.
Eventually, he met up with his teammates, Harrison of Vernal, Utah, and Jackson of Kersey, Colorado. The three guys found Kendell, who had allegedly suffered two attacks from the bear.
The four Northwest College wrestlers stayed together while the rescue team arrived. Kendell was airlifted to a hospital in Billings, Montana, while Brady was taken to a hospital in Wyoming.
Finally, he joined Kendell at the hospital in Montana. Sitting side by side, Brady said,”I’m glad we still have each other.”
Brady has nothing but praise for his brave friend.
Brady’s father, Dallas Lowry, went to Montana to check on him and his friends. He gave Kendell a lot of credit for saving his son’s life.
He also added:
“Kendell is a hero. Any normal person would have turned tail and run, but these bonds they build in college athletics last forever.”
Brady couldn’t stop thinking about the possible consequences if Kendell hadn’t jumped to his rescue. The Utah man said he and his fellow wrestlers will be best friends for the rest of their lives.
The students’ wrestling coach, Jim Zeigler, said he wasn’t surprised to see the young men helping each other because that was the kind of connection they built during training.
When Cummings was asked why he felt the need to risk his own life to save his friend from the bear’s clutches he replied:
“I didn’t want to lose my friend. I could have run away and potentially lost a friend, or taken him out and saved him.”
Brady thanked his dear friend for saving his life and said that if it weren’t for Cummings, he would never have made it off that mountain alive. An online fundraiser was set up to support the injured student’s medical expenses.
Brady’s father Dallas wrote an emotional post on Instagram, where he thanked God and Cummings for saving his son’s life.
“I know God loves these guys and I believe he helped in protecting these heroes. I am thankful for the wrestling family and proud to be a part of it. Thank you and thanks to Mr. Kendall, you are awesome!” she expressed.
We hope that God will grant both of these fellow strugglers a speedy recovery and that their spirits will remain strong forever. Surely, a friend in need is a true friend.