Highlands Ranch woman missing 5 days has both feet amputated

Victim wrote notes for help on extended umbrella

PARK COUNTY, Colo. - A Highlands Ranch woman who was found in the wreckage of her car, five days after she was reported missing had both of her feet amputated Monday.

Kristin M. Hopkins, 43, was found 140 feet below 10,051-foot Red Hill Pass in Park County by emergency rescue personnel.

She was airlifted by Flight for Life to St. Anthony's Central in Lakewood where she was reported to be severely dehydrated and in critical condition Sunday, according to the sheriff's office. Her condition remained critical Monday afternoon.

During a 3 p.m. news conference outside the hospital, a family spokesman had grim news.

"Within the next hour-and-a-half Kristen will undergo a operation to amputate both of her feet," said Brian Willie, while reading a statement from the woman's family.

He said Hopkins suffered numerous internal and external injuries in the crash.

While she was trapped, Hopkins wrote notes on an umbrella in her upside-down 2009 Chevrolet Malibu and extended it out a window. One of the messages read: "Need Dr. Hurt & Bleeding."

The family statement thanked the people who found her and the first responders who were able to rescue her and get her to St. Anthony's Hospital in Lakewood.

Read the family's full statement below:

"We sincerely appreciate all the thoughts, prayers and kind gestures from the community during such a trying time for our family.

We want to first thank the gentleman that found Kristin's car and his quick response in getting her help. 

We want to thank all of the Park County first responder's that rescued Kristin from her car and were able to get her transported to St. Anthony's hospital for the much needed medical attention.

While we're hopeful of her prognosis, Kristin was seriously injured and with multiple internal and external injuries.  Later this afternoon Kristin will be undergoing surgery here to amputate both of her feet.  Doctors were not able to save her feet due to the severity of those injuries.

Kristin is in critical but stable condition at this time and has a very long road ahead.

We cannot thank the doctor's and staff here at St. Anthony's enough for all that they are doing.

Kristin a single mother of 4 incredible children.

At this time we do not know how many days Kristin was trapped in her car.

We do know there are questions about an umbrella she had written pleas for help on, we cannot comment on that right now because we have not seen the umbrella.

Please respect Kirstin privacy and her family during this difficult time."

The rescue started just before 2 p.m. after several individuals reported seeing a body in a wrecked car off of U.S. Highway 285.  The wrecked vehicle had come to a stop upside down in an aspen grove, after rolling several times. 

Park County sheriff’s deputies, Fairplay police, South Park Ambulance, Northwest Fire, Jefferson Como Fire and the Colorado State Patrol responded to the scene, finding Hopkins alive.

SLIDESHOW: Photos of Hopkins' damaged vehicle, from Silverwheels Towing and Recovery:

Firefighter Jim Cravener, who helped rescue Hopkins, said she had an umbrella with her and wrote notes on it, pleading for help.  

"It appeared she had written notes on an umbrella, that she could get out of the vehicle and open the umbrella, hoping somebody from the highway would see it," Cravener told 7NEWS.

Hopkins was reported as a missing person by the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office on April 29.

Red Hill Pass is 7 miles north of Fairplay, Colorado.

Stay with 7NEWS for the latest updates.

Print this article Back to Top