'I Realized if I Don't Call 911 I'm Going to Die': 72-Year-Old Truck Driver Shot During Robbery in Oakland - NBC Bay Area
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'I Realized if I Don't Call 911 I'm Going to Die': 72-Year-Old Truck Driver Shot During Robbery in Oakland

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    A truck driver is recovering in an Oakland hospital after a delivery to the Oakland Coliseum nearly cost him his life. Jodi Hernandez reports. (Published Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016)

    A 72-year-old truck driver is recovering at an Oakland hospital after a delivery to the Oakland Coliseum nearly cost him his life.

    Jerry Matson, who lives in Indiana, was shot by a robber who broke into the cab of his truck as he slept.

    "There was no doubt at the very beginning I'm going to die right now," Matson recalled thinking when he was shot. "I said no not this week. I don't want to die this week."

    It's that will to survive that got Matson through the near-deadly delivery.

    The truck driver was delivering a generator at O.Co Coliseum last month when he said a guard the gate told him he would have to wait until the next morning, forcing him to find a place to sleep for the night.

    "Not being from this area I had no idea where to go," Matson said.

    Matson ended up parked just down the street. He woke up to sound of an armed man breaking through the cab window.

    "As he started coming through pieces of broken glass I went after him," Matson said. "I figured I'd at least get him cut if he was going to kill me."

    But the attacker fired his gun. The bullet pierced through Matson's truck seat before critically wounding him.

    "I realized if I don't call 911 I'm going to die," Matson said. "So I gout out and got my phone and called 911."

    Matson has had three surgeries since the shooting. His wife of 50 years flew in from Indiana and has been at his side through it all.

    The couple's family has set up a GoFundMe page to help them pay for the medical expenses.

    It is unclear when Matson will be well enough to go home. Matson said he can't believe his 43 year truck driving career ended the way it did.

    "I drive a truck all over the US. I go to Miami, I go to Brooklyn, I go to Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit, Chicago," Matson said. "It's not supposed to happen to me."

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