Bonner Bolton’s most serious brush with death — if you watch, you’ll see he has them often — saw the bull riding sensation break his neck being thrown in 2016. His recovery has been amazing, of course. No one watching Bolton dominate the dance floor with his Dancing with the Stars partner Sharna Burgess would think Bolton had ever experienced any physical problems at all. His grace and strength are undiminished — not to mention passion, which DWTS fans can’t stop mentioning. (Burgess-Bolton, team name DenimandDiamonds, are inciting all kinds of romantic speculation.)
But Bolton landed on his head in a scary moment after riding a bull called Cowboy Up, breaking his neck. He had surgery in Chicago for a fractured C-2 vertebra. How did they fix an injury that some doctors said only 2% of people could withstand without becoming paralyzed? (the injury was similar to the injury suffered by Christopher Reeve.) As Bolton explains in the video below, his Chicago surgeons put “cadaver bone” in his neck and fused it there as part of the surgery. Bolton sure doesn’t dance like he’s got a dead man’s bones in his neck. Dancing with the Stars airs Mondays at 8pm on ABC.