GREENVILLE -

A man falls from a hunting stand, then crawls for 12 hours to safety with a broken leg.

It happened Saturday at a hunting camp near Robersonville in Martin County.

Joe Liuzza said he was hunting by himself when he fell 15 feet from a hunting stand.  Liuzza suffered a broken leg in the accident.  His cell phone also broke, leaving him no way to communicate the need for help.

Liuzza, who is deaf, fought his way for 12 hours to make it out of the woods.

"I didn't know if I could make it or not," Liuzza said.  "I just had to just keep going."

Liuzza crawled 100 yards through the woods, then another 100 yards through a field, all while in excruciating pain.

"It was black.  I couldn't see anything," he said.  "I was paranoid because I couldn't hear, I couldn't see."

Liuzza said the temperature was dropping into the 30s and it was difficult to see at night, but he kept going.  When he got to his truck, he used his gun to push down on the pedal to drive home.  There he was taken to the hospital.

"I feel very lucky to be alive," he said.  "I really thought I might be stuck there for at least a few days and maybe not make it."

Liuzza was released from the hospital Wednesday.  He is still recovering with a broken leg.