Jamaican student flown to St. Mary’s after colliding with bear

A fund has been set up to help a young student from Jamaica who was flown via CareFlight to St. Mary’s Hospital Sept. 3 following a car crash near Dallas Divide on Colorado Highway 62.

John-Ross Farquharson, who spent the last three summers working as a grocery clerk at The Village Market in Telluride on a J1 Visa, was on his way to Grand Junction Regional Airport when the vehicle he and three other people were traveling in hit a 400-pound black bear, according Village Market Manager Bob Harnish. Harnish said Farquharson was thrown from the vehicle and suffered severe head injuries while the other travelers remained in the vehicle as it rolled over an embankment.

The other passengers flagged down a vehicle that passed about 20 minutes after the accident and the driver of the passing vehicle dialed 911, according to Harnish. Farquharson was taken via helicopter to St. Mary’s, where he was placed in a medical coma.

He was listed as a patient in the hospital’s intensive care unit Sunday afternoon. His mother, father, sister, fiance and 2-month-old daughter, who Farquharson was on his way home to meet last week, flew in from Jamaica Saturday to be at his bedside, Harnish said.

“They have no means of support once they get here. Now that they are in Grand Junction, I know people there are heart-felt and like to help each other,” Harnish said.

Harnish started the John-Ross Farquharson Fund at Alpine Bank soon after the crash to help raise money for the family’s expenses and Farquharson’s medical bills.

He said he plans to set up a way for the Alpine Bank in Grand Junction to directly take donations to the fund beginning today.

Farquharson is a student at Northern Caribbean University nearly 100 miles west of Kingston in Manchester, Jamaica. A posting on the university’s Facebook page the day after the crash asks for prayers for the marketing major.


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