Only On 8: Bizarre accident critically injures father; family speaks

LAS VEGAS - A local businessman who was seriously injured in a bizarre accident earlier this month is still in critical condition. 
 
Jim Kern, an electrical contractor, was trying to restore power to a retirement community when a transformer suddenly exploded.  The 54-year-old has been receiving treatment at the UMC Lion's Burn Care Center for about two weeks.

The father of 12 is fighting to live for his children and wife, who refuse to give up hope.

"We call them Jimmy Jokes and they're the dad jokes that really aren't funny, but he says them anyways," said the victim's daughter Kassidy Torres jokingly said about her dad's humor.

The Kerns said the laughs, the happy memories, and the good times are what's keeping them going.

"His life has changed," according to Heidi Kern, Jim's wife.  "All of our lives have changed... and it's not going to be the same and that's a hard thing to kind of grasp."

"I don't know what I was expecting honestly, but not what I saw," Torres said.

What Torress saw was her father unable to open his eyes, speak, or move.

"They said your husband's been in an accident," Heidi Kern said.  "It was a very scary experience on that flight just trying to get there so that I would know something."

More than 60 percent of Kern's body was burned in the explosion at the Boulder Cascade complex.

"You just didn't know if he'd make it through the first week especially," according to Heidi Kern.

Kern's family said he's a genuine, down to earth guy who's a fighter.

To help out with his fight, his family has been writing get well cards.

"Sometimes I just have to sit down and take a couple of breaths," Torres said.  "Its really helped me realize that life is short, you really don't know what's going to happen, you gotta make the most of it, and let everyone know you love them every day."

The road to recovery will be an uphill battle for the Kerns.  According to Kern's family, it's been humbling to see how many people are praying for Jim.

If you would like to help with Jim Kern's treatment please donate to the GoFundMe account that was set up for him.


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