Highway worker hit by car suffered severe brain damage

Friday, Feb. 9, 2018 9:21 PM
Colorado Department of Transportation employee Nolan Olson suffered irreversible brain damage after being hit by a vehicle Feb. 2 west of Pagosa Springs.

A Colorado Department of Transportation worker who was struck by a vehicle last week west of Pagosa Springs suffered severe injuries to his legs and irreversible brain damage, according to a family member.

Nolan Olson, 64, was filling potholes Feb. 2 on U.S. Highway 160 near mile marker 140 when he was hit by a passing car, said CDOT spokeswoman Lisa Schwantes.

He was rushed to Pagosa Springs Medical Center before being flown to St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood.

Olson’s stepdaughter, Tonya Hamilton, wrote in a journal entry on the website CaringBridge that the damage to his brain is “beyond repair and beyond healing.”

“Right now, machines are keeping his physical body alive, and the Nolan that we all knew and loved is no longer with us,” she wrote Thursday night.

Olson of Pagosa Springs has worked for CDOT for 14 years.

The Pagosa Springs Sun identified the driver who hit Olson as 83-year-old Jerry Modisette of Pagosa Springs. He was cited with careless driving causing bodily injury, according to the newspaper.

Pagosa Springs Police Department did not return phone calls this week seeking details about the crash.