It's been a dramatic week in the Outer Banks. First, the Battle of the Banks was postponed due to a ferocious nor'easter. Then the Atlantic washed over Highway 12 in several spots along Pea Island, stranding some and causing major inconveniences for others. And just as the weather began to subside with clear skies approaching, Jesse Hines, the area's brightest surf star, snapped his tibia and fibula while surfing the shallow sandbars of Avon.
"He said he was getting barreled and doesn't remember falling," said Jesse's wife, Whitney. "But I guess it was really shallow and his foot hit the sandbar pretty hard, and his whole leg twisted until both of the bones broke from the knee to ankle."
Hines is currently undergoing surgery in the Outer Banks Hospital, replacing his tibia with a metal rod in his right leg, incidentally, the same leg that endured a titanium hip replacement after an accident when he was sixteen.
"His whole right leg is bionic," says Whitney. "I call him the bionic man: a titanium rod in his femur and now in his lower leg – like the Terminator."
While Hines' recovery plan has yet to be determined, doctors told his family he could be bearing weight tomorrow – "or at least moving it around," said Whitney, "as opposed to being in a cast for twelve weeks and doing physical therapy."
Before Hines' shin-snapping session in Avon, he had recently released his new album, In the Right Time, playing shows in the area to promote his new music. While his injury may keep him dry for the time being, it shouldn't hurt his musical ambition.
"He's in pretty good spirits," said Whitney. "He said he'll probably be writing some new songs, but he was pretty sedated at the time, so you never know."