Woman remembers surviving a 200-foot drop in Southern California’s San Gabriel Mountains

(KTLA) – A woman who fell 200 feet off one of Southern California’s tallest mountains shares her story of survival.

Ruth Woroniecki, 40, from Thornton, Colorado, had a long road to recovery after this horrific fall.

Woroniecki left the family campground on Christmas Eve morning to climb Cucamonga Peak in the San Gabriel Mountains. After reaching the top of 8,800 feet and beginning the descent, Woroniecki slipped on the ice and fell about 200 feet, coming to rest on a fallen tree trunk and sustaining serious injuries.

Woroniecki was volunteering at a local prison in the Los Angeles area to help homeless citizens when he decided to embark on a Christmas Eve hike.

An avid hiker, she was ready for the trip, but it got a little cold during the descent.

“The crazy thing is that it’s my last memory,” Woroniecki recalls.

Luckily, a tree trunk stopped her from falling. Eventually she found Woroniecki injured and bleeding by four hikers and called for her help. Together they waited for the San Bernardino Rescue her helicopter crew to find them.

Strong mountain winds took another two hours for the rescue team to reach Woroniecki.

Ultimately, one rescuer was safely lowered into a mountain just west of Woroniecki’s location.

“He approached me and informed me that I would have to hike to another location about 200 feet away.

Despite her injured condition, she thrived through severe pain from a broken neck and was at risk of paralysis.

“They held their heads up the side of the mountain until they were able to drop the cable, and me and my rescuers climbed up together.” [to the helicopter] One shot,” said Woroniecki.

The horrific fall left Woroniecki with numerous ligament and tendon ruptures in his legs, as well as major scars on his head, chin and face that required more than 40 stitches. She also underwent surgery for her broken neck.

“[The surgeon] Put the screw in the top vertebra, then put the plate and four screws in the bottom vertebra.

Woroniecki, who works as a waitress to earn money and travel the world helping others, said she was grateful to the rescue workers and doctors who saved her life.

When she makes a full recovery, Woroniecki plans to travel to South America and continue working to help others. Woman remembers surviving a 200-foot drop in Southern California’s San Gabriel Mountains

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